from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. The yellowish, waxlike secretion of certain glands lining the canal of the external ear. Also called cerumen.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A waxy substance secreted by the ear.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. See cerumen.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Cerumen.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a soft yellow wax secreted by glands in the ear canal
Sorry, no etymologies found.
* Linguistic aside: in German, earwax is called "Ohrenschmalz" which literally translates into "ear-lard" - giving a much better idea about the consistency of the stuff.
Excess earwax is pushed naturally to the opening of the ear canal, where it is washed away, pushed out as the cerumen glands secrete more wax and also by epithelial migration as your skin goes through its replacement cycle.
The January issue of Nature Genetics reports on the identification of a gene that determines whether your earwax is dry or wet; people of African and European ancestry have predominantly wet earwax.
This is "Important": The American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) will issue the first comprehensive clinical guidelines to help health care practitioners identify patients with cerumen (commonly referred to as earwax) impaction.
The American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) will issue the first comprehensive clinical guidelines to help health care practitioners identify patients with cerumen (commonly referred to as earwax) impaction ...
That's why tiny glands in the outer ear canal constantly pump out a watery substance, which gets mixed with bits of dead hair and skin and together is called earwax or cerumen.
The caption for the 'earwax' photo to which you link illustrates quite nicely the importance of proper punctuation usage.
Aside from an annoying tendency to write both 'earwax' and 'ear wax', 'eardrum' and 'ear drum', I didn't catch any obvious boo-boos.
On examination into the ear you will often find either the cavity filled or nearly so, with a hard black substance, (the inspissated "earwax") almost as hard as horn, or else the ear will be quite empty, and the sides of the cavity _dry_ and red, though perhaps not properly in a state of inflammation.
See your doctor to rule out correctable causes of hearing loss, such as earwax, an infection or a tumor, and have your hearing tested by a hearing specialist (audiologist).