[ skruhb-uhp ]

  1. the act of washing or bathing thoroughly, especially the aseptic washing by doctors, nurses, etc., before a surgical operation.

Origin of scrub-up

First recorded in 1915–20

Words Nearby scrub-up Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use scrub-up in a sentence

  • We mustnt even waste the time for me to scrub up, and Im taking no chances at all with any non-surgical conditions.

    Cursed | George Allan England
  • Then, as fortune would have it, the housekeeper sent them in to scrub up the floor behind the clerk's desk.

    Jennie Gerhardt | Theodore Dreiser
  • It takes her a week to scrub up the kitchen, and then one end of it is so dirty she has to begin again.

    Cy Whittaker's Place | Joseph C. Lincoln
  • The least yer can do is ter scrub up, comb yer har an' put on a clean shirt ter-morrer.

    The Angel of the Gila: | Cora Marsland
  • So he climbed through the scrub up the mountain-side till he came out upon a grassy slope, two hundred feet above the camp.

    Dusty Star | Olaf Baker

Other Idioms and Phrases with scrub-up


Thoroughly wash one's hands and forearms, as before performing surgery. For example, The residents had to scrub up in case they were called on to assist with the operation. [c. 1900]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.