One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
nounPlural valleculaeAnatomy Botany
A groove or furrow.
- ‘Examination of the oropharynx revealed a large midline mass extending along the posterior pharyngeal wall from the level of soft palate to vallecula.’
- ‘Proceed with the curved blade into the vallecula or straight over the epiglottis with the straight blade.’
- ‘Eight different bones from Australian species of fish and a king prawn shell were selected and each was positioned individually in the tonsil, vallecula and piriform fossa.’
- ‘Double swallow to clear residue in the valleculae.’
- ‘In normal persons, small amounts of food are commonly retained in the valleculae or pyriform sinus after swallowing.’
Mid 19th century: from a late Latin variant of Latin vallicula, diminutive of Latin vallis ‘valley’.
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