[ bahy-op-see ]
/ ˈbaɪ ɒp si /

noun, plural bi·op·sies.

the removal for diagnostic study of a piece of tissue from a living body.
a specimen obtained from a biopsy.

verb (used with object), bi·op·sied, bi·op·sy·ing.

to remove (living tissue) for diagnostic evaluation.

Nearby words

  1. bioplastic,
  2. biopoiesis,
  3. biopolymer,
  4. bioprocess,
  5. bioprospecting,
  6. biopsychic,
  7. biopsychology,
  8. bioreactor,
  9. bioreagent,
  10. bioregion

Origin of biopsy

First recorded in 1890–95; bi-2 + -opsy1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for biopsied


/ (ˈbaɪɒpsɪ) /

noun plural -sies

examination, esp under a microscope, of tissue from a living body to determine the cause or extent of a disease
the sample taken for such an examination
Derived Formsbioptic (baɪˈɒptɪk), adjective

Word Origin for biopsy

C20: from bio- + Greek opsis sight

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for biopsied



1895, from French biopsie, coined by French dermatologist Ernest Besnier (1831-1909) from Greek bi- comb. form of bios "life" (see bio-) + opsis "a sight" (see eye (n.)). As a verb, from 1964.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for biopsied


[ bīŏp′sē ]


The removal and examination of a sample of tissue from a living body for diagnostic purposes.
A specimen so obtained.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for biopsied


[ bīŏp′sē ]

A sample of tissue removed from a living body by a medical provider for diagnostic purposes.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.