Main definitions of spica in English

: spica1Spica2

spica1

noun

Medicine
  • A bandage folded into a spiral arrangement resembling an ear of wheat or barley.

    • ‘As a basic rule, in a patient with a clinically suspected scaphoid fracture but negative initial radiographs, it is reasonable to apply a short arm thumb spica and re-evaluate the patient in two weeks.’
    • ‘Current treatment for this type of fracture is a thumb spica, but some evidence suggests that the thumb could be omitted from the cast.’
    bandage, covering, plaster, gauze, lint, compress, ligature, swathe, poultice, salve
    View synonyms

Origin

Late 17th century: from Latin, literally ‘spike, ear of corn’; related to spina ‘spine’. The current sense is influenced by Greek stakhus ‘ear of wheat’.

Pronunciation

spica

/ˈspīkə//ˈspaɪkə/

Main definitions of spica in English

: spica1Spica2

Spica2

proper noun

Astronomy
  • The brightest star in the constellation Virgo.

Origin

Latin, literally ‘ear of wheat (in the hand of the goddess)’.

Pronunciation

Spica

/ˈspīkə/