Wednesday, May 05, 2010


nosocomial \nah-suh-KOH-mee-ul\ adjective
: acquired or occurring in a hospital

Example sentence:
Mariah had expected to be out of the hospital today, but she was told that she had developed a nosocomial infection that would need to be monitored by the staff for at least 24 hours.

Did you know?
"Nosocomial" is a word that usually occurs in formal medical contexts; specifically, in reference to hospital-acquired sickness. We hope you never encounter "nosocomial" as part of your own medical diagnosis, but if you do, you might want to remember that the term descends from "nosocomium," the Late Latin word for "hospital." "Nosocomium" in turn traces to the Greek "nosos," meaning "disease." That root has given English other words as well, including "zoonosis" ("a disease communicable from animals to humans under natural conditions") and "nosology" ("a classification or list of diseases" or "a branch of medical science that deals with classification of diseases").

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