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Line breaks: aut|opsy
Pronunciation: /ˈɔːtɒpsi
, ɔːˈtɒpsi

Definition of autopsy in English:

noun (plural autopsies)

A post-mortem examination to discover the cause of death or the extent of disease: a Home Office pathologist carried out the autopsy [mass noun]: on autopsy it was established that he had suffered from a rare brain condition
More example sentences
  • Medical examiners frequently perform autopsies if a death is deemed suspicious or unexplained.
  • Medical Examiners are pathologists who have special training in death investigation and legal autopsies.
  • There are two basic kinds of autopsy: the forensic autopsy and the medical autopsy.

verb (autopsies, autopsying, autopsied)

[with object] Back to top  
Perform an autopsy on (a body or organ): the animal must be autopsied as soon as possible (as adjective autopsied) an autopsied brain
More example sentences
  • These bodies were autopsied secretly.
  • When his body was autopsied he had several broken bones and possible internal injuries.
  • The central idea of his work came to him as he autopsied the body of a notorious Italian criminal.


mid 17th century (in the sense 'personal observation'): from French autopsie or modern Latin autopsia, from Greek, from autoptēs 'eyewitness', from autos 'self' + optos 'seen'.

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