Definition of gangrene in English:



  • [mass noun] Localized death and decomposition of body tissue, resulting from obstructed circulation or bacterial infection.

    ‘gangrene set in, and her leg was amputated’
    • ‘Rarely, fulminant ischaemic colitis occurs with gangrene or perforation and needs urgent surgical exploration.’
    • ‘Vasopressin should be infused through a central catheter because peripheral extravasation could cause tissue necrosis and gangrene.’
    • ‘The presence of deep infection with abscess, cellulitis, gangrene, or osteomyelitis is an indication for hospitalization and prompt surgical drainage.’
    • ‘Feces, urine, or blood can easily contaminate the wound and infection can range from a superficial infection to septicemia and gangrene of vulvar tissue.’
    • ‘Patients with deep abscess, extensive bone or joint involvement, crepitus, substantial necrosis or gangrene, or necrotizing fasciitis may be candidates for surgery.’


  • Become affected with gangrene.

    ‘his wound had gangrened’
    • ‘The limb that is left to gangrene normally has to be cut off, and that would be a sad indictment on yourselves and a very poor response to the residents of the periphery of town.’
    • ‘But the vet said the rock hand lacerated his stomach and part of the intestine had gangrened.’


Mid 16th century: via French from Latin gangraena, from Greek gangraina.