Definition of noma in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈnəʊmə/


[mass noun]
A form of gangrene affecting the face, usually caused by a bacterial infection and typically occurring in young children suffering from malnutrition or other disease: she suffers from noma, a gangrenous disease
More example sentences
  • She suffers from noma, a gangrenous disease known in Africa as the ‘face of poverty’.
  • The WHO has fearfully reported that Noma may be on the increase in various African countries.
  • The facial reconstruction of a Noma victim is both complex and time consuming and requires very special skills.


Late 17th century: Latin, alteration of nome 'ulcer', from Greek nomē, from nemein 'to feed'.

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