Definition of amputate in US English:



[with object]
  • Cut off (a limb) by surgical operation.

    ‘surgeons had to amputate her left hand’
    ‘the wounded had to have legs or arms amputated’
    • ‘If tissue damage is severe, a health care provider may need to remove the tissue surgically or amputate the limb.’
    • ‘Surgeons decided to remove his infected limbs to stop the disease spreading, amputating both his legs above the knee, his right hand and forearm and the fingers and thumb on his left hand.’
    • ‘A Scottish surgeon who caused controversy by amputating healthy limbs from patients suffering from an as yet unrecognised condition has won a major boost in his bid to get the disorder officially classified in the bible of mental illness.’
    • ‘The surgeries took 14 hours, and they wanted to amputate my right leg.’
    • ‘I said that - something about, ‘You have to amputate an infected limb for the patient to survive.’’
    • ‘Several years and a couple surgeries later, her foot was amputated below the knee.’
    • ‘It was this faith that saw him through a complicated surgery to amputate his right leg on account of diabetes-related complications.’
    • ‘She had grown so used to carrying Muffin around that she felt as if the vet had amputated a limb.’
    • ‘A clear cell carcinoma in keeping with renal origin was found on biopsy, and the finger was amputated.’
    • ‘When a limb gets infected and is beyond repair, and there is danger of the patient losing his life because of this, the surgeon has no other option left to save his life than to amputate the infected limb.’
    • ‘There's also the possibility that you could be suffering from a dysmorphic disorder, such as the one experienced by people who feel a compulsive need to amputate their own limbs.’
    • ‘Gangrene set in and surgeons had to amputate the leg to save his life.’
    • ‘The dilemma of the surgeon being asked to amputate a healthy limb is similar.’
    • ‘He stirred and I worried that he would wake while I was amputating his leg.’
    • ‘We can measure his heart rhythms, take his blood pressure and even amputate a limb.’
    • ‘Fire chiefs have admitted that as soldiers are unable to use cutting gear, surgeons might have to amputate limbs of car crash victims at accident scenes.’
    • ‘I used starch when the client demanded it and made the creases sharp enough to amputate a limb.’
    • ‘By inhibiting such a current after amputating a salamander's leg, they can, in effect, flip a switch that shuts down the process of regrowth.’
    • ‘Surgeons had to amputate both hands and her legs just below the knee, to prevent the spread of infection.’
    • ‘They might have beheaded heretics and adulterers and amputated the limbs of petty thieves but they didn't bother us.’
    cut off, sever, remove, remove surgically, saw off, chop off, lop off, hack off, dock, cleave, hew off, shear off, slice off
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Mid 16th century: from Latin amputat- ‘lopped off’, from amputare, from am- (for amb- ‘about’) + putare ‘to prune’.