[ pros-thee-sis for 1; pros-thuh-sis for 2 ]
/ prɒsˈθi sɪs for 1; ˈprɒs θə sɪs for 2 /

noun, plural pros·the·ses [pros-thee-seez for 1; pros-thuh-seez for 2] /prɒsˈθi siz for 1; ˈprɒs θəˌsiz for 2/.

a device, either external or implanted, that substitutes for or supplements a missing or defective part of the body.
Grammar, Prosody. the addition of one or more sounds or syllables to a word or line of verse, especially at the beginning.

Nearby words

  1. prostatorrhea,
  2. prostatotomy,
  3. prostatovesiculectomy,
  4. prostatovesiculitis,
  5. prosternum,
  6. prosthetic,
  7. prosthetic dentistry,
  8. prosthetic group,
  9. prosthetics,
  10. prosthetist

Origin of prosthesis

1545–55; < Late Latin < Greek prósthesis a putting to, addition, equivalent to prós to + thésis a placing; see thesis

Related formspros·thet·ic [pros-thet-ik] /prɒsˈθɛt ɪk/, adjectivepros·thet·i·cal·ly, adverb


[ pros-thet-ik ]
/ prɒsˈθɛt ɪk /


of or relating to an artificial body part or prosthesis: He was fitted for a prosthetic arm.
of or relating to the fields of surgical or dental prosthetics: advances in prosthetic technology.
of or relating to a substance, item, or process used to transform a person’s appearance temporarily, especially as a theatrical special effect: The final scene required painstaking application of prosthetic hair and skin.


an artificial body part; a prosthesis: Hundreds of amputees volunteered to test the new prosthetics.
an appearance-altering substance or item applied temporarily to a person’s face or body, especially to create a theatrical special effect: Alien creatures are brought to life with realistic prosthetics.

Origin of prosthetic

1735–40; < Modern Latin prostheticus, from Hellenistic Greek prosthetikós, equivalent to prósthet(os) “added on,” verbid of prostithе́nai “to add, put onto” (pros- pros-. + the-, stem of tithе́nai “to put, place” + -tos verbid suffix) + -ikos -ic

Related formspros·thet·i·cal·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for prosthetically


/ (ˈprɒsθɪsɪs, prɒsˈθiːsɪs) /

noun plural -ses (-ˌsiːz)

  1. the replacement of a missing bodily part with an artificial substitute
  2. an artificial part such as a limb, eye, or tooth
linguistics another word for prothesis
Derived Formsprosthetic (prɒsˈθɛtɪk), adjectiveprosthetically, adverb

Word Origin for prosthesis

C16: via Late Latin from Greek: an addition, from prostithenai to add, from pros- towards + tithenai to place

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 prosthetically
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for prosthetically


[ prŏs-thēsĭs ]

n. pl. pros•the•ses (-sēz)

An artificial device used to replace a missing body part, such as a limb or heart valve.
Replacement of a missing body part with such a device.


[ prŏs-thĕtĭk ]


Serving as or relating to a prosthesis.
Of or relating to prosthetics.

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

Science definitions for prosthetically


[ prŏs-thēsĭs ]

Plural prostheses (prŏs-thēsēz)

An artificial device used to replace a missing or defective body part, such as a limb or a heart valve.
Related formsprosthetic adjective (prŏs-thĕtĭk)

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.