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a combining form meaning “skin,” used in the formation of compound words: dermatology.



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Also dermo-. Also especially before a vowel, derm-, dermat-.

Origin of dermato-

<Greek, combining form of dermat-, stem of dérma
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021


What does dermato- mean?

Dermato- is a combining form used like a prefix meaning “skin.” It is used in many medical terms, especially in pathology.

Dermato- comes from the Greek dérma, meaning “skin.”

What are variants of dermato-?

When combined with words or word elements that begin with a vowel, dermato- becomes dermat-, as in dermatitis. The combining forms dermo- and derm- are also variants of dermato-.

Closely related to dermato- are the combining forms -derm, -derma, -dermatous, and -dermis. Learn more about their specific applications at our Words That Use articles for the forms.

Examples of dermato-

One example of a word that features the combining form dermato- is dermatology, “the branch of medicine dealing with the skin and its diseases.”

The first part of the word, dermato- means “skin,” as we’ve seen. The second half of the word, -logy, is commonly used to denote a science, body of knowledge, or area of study. So, dermatology literally translates to “the study of skin.”

What are some words that use the combining form dermato-?

What are some other forms that dermato- may be commonly confused with?

Break it down!

The combining form pathy is used to indicate disease. With this in mind, what is dermatopathy?

British Dictionary definitions for dermato-


derma-, before a vowel dermat- or before a vowel derm-

combining form

indicating skindermatology; dermatome; dermal; dermatitis

Word Origin for dermato-

from Greek derma skin
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

Medical definitions for dermato-



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