Definition of ambulatory in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈambyələˌtôrē/


1Relating to or adapted for walking.
Example sentences
  • After five years, she switched to ambulatory dialysis, which she could do at home - and tried to live as full a life as possible.
  • There is now what he calls a completely ambulatory approach to diabetes - you can walk around with a device in your pocket that adjusts your pump and keeps you topped up with insulin.
  • Surgeons typically choose the vein from the leg since its removal does not cause any future ambulatory problems.
1.1 Medicine Able to walk; not bedridden: ambulatory patients
More example sentences
  • Then we go room to room for those who are not ambulatory.
  • One ambulatory schizophrenic had been an outpatient since childhood and an inpatient for one-third of his adult life.
  • In an office structure, for example, most of the occupants will be ambulatory and capable of proceeding to a safe zone or the exit stairs.
1.2 Medicine Relating to patients who are able to walk: an ambulatory care facility
More example sentences
  • He met three consultant surgeons, from Italy, Belgium, and Germany, who will operate on patients in the ambulatory care and diagnostic centre at the Central Middlesex Hospital, London.
  • These affiliates include other hospitals, hospices, home care agencies, nursing homes, and ambulatory care facilities.
  • Day surgery facilities, ambulatory care clinics and specialist centres-of-excellence are all part of the new service delivery model.
1.3Movable; mobile: an ambulatory ophthalmic service
More example sentences
  • We are looking at the ambulatory services throughout this country and we are boosting the skills of rural nurse practitioners so that they can, as the first point of contact, deal with the trauma that they often come across.
  • At the beginning of the pandemic we will attempt to keep people away from hospital and treat them at home with the ambulatory services that are available.
  • Employees treat their boss like an ambulatory suggestion box, constantly waylaying him in the hall with ideas large and small.

noun (plural ambulatories)

A place for walking, especially an aisle around the apse or a cloister in a church or monastery.
Example sentences
  • Foundations on Bruneau's plan are so wide and so clearly parallel to, and equal distances from, the north and south walls, respectively, that they must have delimited corridors or ambulatories.
  • The path to the open altar area, well below the floor levels of the side ambulatories, leads downward, so that pews around the altar are higher, subverting the convention of an elevated chancel segregated from the laity.
  • These latter, such as the ambulatories leading to or flanking the central dome, transform what might otherwise be relatively austere into elegance and beauty.


Mid 16th century (as a noun): from Latin ambulatorius, from ambulare 'to walk'.

Words that rhyme with ambulatory

circumambulatory, perambulatory

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: am·bu·la·to·ry

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