Definition of splint in English:



  • 1A strip of rigid material used for supporting and immobilizing a broken bone when it has been set.

    ‘she had to wear splints on her legs’
    • ‘Medications, hand splints and physical therapy can help in earlier stages of rheumatoid arthritis.’
    • ‘I explained to him that it was more of a severe sprain than an actual fracture and prescribed a wrist splint to be worn for the next three weeks.’
    • ‘If a single digit is infected, a finger splint supporting the interphalangeal joints in extension is usually adequate.’
    • ‘Thirty three patients on the surgical waiting list were randomised to receive either technical accessories or accessories plus splints, alongside extensive support on how to deal with the activities of daily living.’
    • ‘He wears a splint to support his right ankle and enable him to walk, and his right arm is a dead weight.’
    • ‘In sports such as basketball, football, and hockey, the athlete may proceed with play and practice with extension taping as long as the splint is worn at all other times.’
    • ‘To prevent relapses, when the last plaster cast is removed a splint must be worn full-time for two to three months and thereafter at night for 2 to 4 years.’
    • ‘Casts and splints hold an injured bone in place so that it can heal correctly.’
    • ‘Southern African herbalists apply milk of the euphorbia to draw out deep-lying thorns and use wooden splints for broken limbs.’
    • ‘Neither of the children ever experienced any pain or discomfort with either the casting or wearing the splint.’
    • ‘When the symptoms are minor a wrist splint worn mainly at night or anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and avoidance of the causative movements may be all that is needed.’
    • ‘If this accident had happened on shore, the corpsman would have followed the same procedures but would have had to immobilize the leg with a splint.’
    • ‘In some cases, infants will need to wear a splint or brace.’
    • ‘The patient may be required to wear splints twenty-four hours a day.’
    • ‘Both groups showed improvement in electrodiagnostic studies at the end of the trial, but the patients who wore the splint full time showed significantly greater improvement.’
    • ‘The splint supported the posterolateral part of the lower leg but also had a slight anterior curve.’
    • ‘They come with in-built splints to immobilise broken bones and stabilise the cervical spine - the most vulnerable injury area.’
    • ‘Adams wears splints on his wrists at night that keep his wrists from overly flexing or extending, which can put pressure on the median nerve and cause pain.’
    • ‘A therapist may also recommend that your child make use of special supports or splints to help protect joints and keep them in a good functional position.’
    • ‘You also might choose to wear the splint during the day.’
  • 2A long, thin strip of wood used to light a fire.

    • ‘By the light of burning splints, the raiders had marched all the men into the fields and tied them up.’
    • ‘Then he cuts a few short splints from the edge of another scrap of wood.’
    1. 2.1 A rigid or flexible strip, especially of wood, used in basketwork.
      • ‘One Indian resident of Sturbridge recalled in the 1930s that for years a mallet lay in the woods near the place where his ancestors used to beat out splints for baskets or mats.’
      • ‘Some of us had a chance to beat on a hickory log to make basket splints, or watch gunsmithing, cabinetry, tinsmithing, pottery, printing, and many other trades.’
      • ‘It was employed to create splints for making baskets, skin an animal, fashion snowshoes, harpoons, spears, bowls, and ladles, and make a birchbark canoe.’
      • ‘The vegetation also provided splints from which the Indians wove baskets, which were considered vital for religious use.’
  • 3A bony enlargement on the inside of a horse's leg, on the splint bone.

    • ‘The filly Morning Pride by-passes the 1000 while City On A Hill sits out the 2000 after sustaining a splint injury which will keep him off the track until the middle of June.’
    • ‘He's got a nasty old splint on the inside of his knee and it often flares up,’ said the Jackdaws Castle trainer.’
    • ‘After allowing the splint injury to heel, Bellamy Road returned to the published work tab on July 16 over the training track at Saratoga Race Course.’
    • ‘In ventral view, the sphenorbital fissure, which is long and oval, is exposed posteriorly and is separated from the relatively small optic foramen by a narrow bony splint.’
    • ‘Bellamy Road came out of his seventh-place finish in the Kentucky Derby with a splint injury and has not raced since.’
  • 4South African A fragment of diamond.

    • ‘Chips or splints are often fashioned by the cutter with very little loss of weight.’
    • ‘"Splints" are sharp-pointed splinters of diamond crystal.’


[with object]
  • Secure (a broken limb) with a splint or splints.

    ‘his leg was splinted’
    • ‘She greeted me with a gasp and an interrogation that I ignored, and eventually got around to splinting my swollen wrist while advising me that I should go to the hospital as soon as possible.’
    • ‘The treatment plan recommended at this late stage included splinting the hand in an intrinsic-plus position and observation to allow definitive demarcation of the involved parts of the left hand.’
    • ‘To keep a loosened or re-implanted tooth in place, it may need to be splinted to the teeth next to it for a period of time (usually about seven to 10 days).’
    • ‘Burned hands are often splinted to decrease loss of function.’
    • ‘The thumb is splinted to prevent further injury.’
    • ‘Levin was splinting a Guardsman's broken arm when Hawkins came into the infirmary, his faintly silvering hair still wet from his bath.’
    • ‘The same with the broken hand, which was splinted and bandaged.’
    • ‘Upper extremities should be splinted as close to a gravity-neutral position as possible, preferably at heart level.’
    • ‘The enduring memory Charles Hutchinson has of his brother James as a boy is of a sandy-haired 11-year-old with his limbs splinted every night before he went to sleep.’
    • ‘Doctors also recommend splinting an affected joint for a short period of time and then applying ice to decrease inflammation, promote clotting, and relieve pain.’
    • ‘When the deformity relapses in spite of proper splinting a simple operation may be needed when the child is over two years of age.’
    • ‘It really could have been a lot worse and Johnny and Cipriano did an excellent job in splinting that arm right away.’
    • ‘His broken arm throbbed - he'd almost passed out twice while the bonesetter splinted it - and he felt as if the sobs of the wounded were a dark and restless sea on which he drifted.’
    • ‘If a body part must be immobilised - to allow skin graft adherence, for example - then the part should be splinted or positioned in an anti-deformity position for the minimum time possible.’
    • ‘The reduced fracture is splinted with buddy taping.’
    • ‘There his leg was splinted and eight Tibetan yak herdsmen carried Conan for 17 hours to base camp.’
    • ‘Our manipulation, casting and splinting procedure has never resulted in any disability for the patient.’
    • ‘Closed fractures of the distal phalanx may require reduction but usually are minimally displaced and stable, and can be splinted.’
    • ‘When we arrived Mike's leg had been splinted and the third person in the party was heading on out to call for help.’
    • ‘During activity, or while coughing, the patient is able to tighten the belt encircling his chest, splinting the sternal wound by stabilizing the thoracic cage.’


Middle English (in splint (sense 2 of the noun); also denoting a section of armour): from Middle Dutch, Middle Low German splinte ‘metal plate or pin’; related to splinter.