-ectomy, -ectome, -ectomize

(Greek: a suffix; cut, excise, surgical removal of)

Removal of a portion of a kidney and ureter by means of surgery.
1. Amputation of an entire leg together with one lateral half of the pelvis on the same side.
2. Amputation of a lower limb through the sacroiliac joint.
The excision of part of a digital phalanx (any of the bones or phalanges of the fingers or toes).
Excision of half of the pylorus.

The pylorus is a thick muscular ring (sphincter) surrounding the outlet of the stomach into the duodenum.

It closes to prevent unduly large pieces of food from leaving, thus enabling stomach acid and enzymes to break them down further.

1. The surgical removal of half the brain.
2. Excision of one cerebral hemisphere; undertaken for malignant tumors, intractable epilepsy usually associated with infantile hemiplegia due to birth injury, and other cerebral conditions.

Surgeons have performed hemispherectomies hundreds of times for disorders that can not be controlled any other way

  • The surgery has no apparent effect on personality or memory.
  • People can survive and function fairly well after the procedure although they may have some physical disabilities; such as, a significant loss of the function on one side of the body.
  • A person can walk, run, dance, or skip; but some lose use of the hand opposite the hemisphere that was removed.
  • Sometimes, if the left side of the brain is taken out, most people have problems with their speech; however, the younger a person is after a hemispherectomy, the less speech disability the person is likely to have.
  • The surgery consists of two forms: "anatomical hemispherectomic removal" of an entire hemisphere of the brain or "functional hemispherectomies" that take out only parts of a hemisphere.
  • Doctors often prefer anatomical hemispherectomies because "leaving even a little bit of brain behind can lead seizures to return", stated neurologist John Freeman of Johns Hopkins, which specializes in the procedure.
  • The functional hemispherectomies, which U.C.L.A. surgeons usually perform, lead to less blood loss.
  • A recent study found that 86 percent of the 111 children who underwent the procedure at Johns Hopkins between 1975 and 2001 are either seizure-free or have non-disabling seizures that do not require medication.
  • One reason for the procedure is to stop debilitating seizures and today brain surgeons perform hemispherectomies on patients who undergo dozens of seizures daily which resist all medication and result from conditions that primarily afflict one hemisphere of the brain.
  • The seizures are often progressive and damage the rest of the brain if not treated.
  • A study found that children who underwent a hemispherectomy often improved academically [and physically] once their seizures stopped.
  • Hemispherectomy is one of the most drastic kinds of brain surgery and it is done only when not doing so will be worse.
—Information based on "Do You Need Only Half Your Brain?"
by Charles Q. Choi in Scientific American;
March, 2008; page 88.
Excision or the surgical removal of all (total hepatectomy) or part (partial hepatectomy) or (subtotal hepatectomy) of the liver.
Herniotomy combined with appendectomy.
The excision, or cutting out, of tissue.
The surgical process of removing a hydrocele (the accumulation of fluid in the coat around the testis).

Small hydroceles tend to disappear by one year of age while larger hydroceles may persist and warrant surgery.

Excision of the hymen (the fold of muscous membrane often found at the orifice of the vagina; the vaginal membrane).
hypophysectomy (s), hypophysectomies (pl) (nouns)
The surgical removal of the pituitary gland: "The hypophysectomy of the pituitary gland takes place in the middle of the head where it consists of two main lobes, the anterior (front) lobe, secreting most of the hormones; and the posterior (back) lobe which stores and releases neurohormones received from the hypothalamus which functions to regulate body temperature, water balance, sugar and fat metabolism, and the secretion of releasing and inhibiting of hormones."
hysterectomy (misspelling: historectomy)
A surgical removal of the uterus, resulting in the inability to become pregnant (sterility).

It may be done through the abdomen or the vagina. It is also known as: vaginal hysterectomy; abdominal hysterectomy; laparoscopic hysterectomy; supracervical hysterectomy; radical hysterectomy; and removal of the uterus.

Hysterectomy is an operation that is commonly performed. There are many reasons a woman may need a hysterectomy; however, there are non-surgical approaches to treat many of these conditions.

During a hysterectomy, the uterus may be completely or partially removed. The fallopian tubes and ovaries may also be removed.

A partial (or supracervical) hysterectomy is removal of just the upper portion of the uterus, leaving the cervix intact.

A total hysterectomy is the removal of the entire uterus and the cervix. A radical hysterectomy is the removal of the uterus, the tissue on both sides of the cervix (parametrium), and the upper part of the vagina.

A hysterectomy may be done through an abdominal incision (abdominal hysterectomy), a vaginal incision (vaginal hysterectomy), or through laparoscopic incisions (small incisions on the abdomen or laparoscopic hysterectomy).

Removal of the entire uterus and the cervix is referred to as a total hysterectomy. Removal of the body of the uterus without removing the cervix is referred to as a subtotal hysterectomy.

James Blundell, a London obstetrician, performed the first successful hysterectomy in 1828. He also proposed doing a Caesarean hysterectomy (removing the uterus with the baby inside) to save the life of the mother (and the baby). Blundell is considered a founder of modern abdominal surgery.

Related cutting-word units: cast-; castrat-; -cise, -cide; mutil-; put-; sec-, seg-; temno-; -tomy; trunc-.

-Ectomy Word-Sources of Definitions