Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A hollow flexible tube for insertion into a body cavity, duct, or vessel to allow the passage of fluids or distend a passageway. Its uses include the drainage of urine from the bladder through the urethra or insertion through a blood vessel into the heart for diagnostic purposes.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A small tube inserted into a body cavity to remove fluid, create an opening, distend a passageway or administer a drug

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The name of various instruments for passing along mucous canals, esp. applied to a tubular instrument to be introduced into the bladder through the urethra to draw off the urine.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In surgery: A tubular instrument introduced through the urethra into the bladder, to draw off the urine when its discharge is arrested by disease or accident. ⟨b) A tube for introduction into other canals: as, a Eustachian catheter.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a thin flexible tube inserted into the body to permit introduction or withdrawal of fluids or to keep the passageway open

Etymologies

Late Latin, from Greek kathetēr, from kathīenai, kathe-, to send down : kat-, kata-, cata- + hīenai, to send; see yē- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

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