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cauterize (verb) burn (a wound or an injury) using a chemical or heat; deaden feelings.
When a doctor cauterizes an area affected by an injury or by infection, they burn it with a hot needle, laser, or a caustic substance. The purpose is to prevent the infection from spreading to the other parts around. Cauterizing results in destroying a dead tissue to save the rest of the body.
- Cauterizing an injury is the practice in modern medicine to check infection, but in the olden days, people were cauterized for even petty crimes by being burnt and branded with red-hot metal rods.
- When Kenny suffered multiple injuries on his fall down the stairs, the doctor cauterized some of the injuries with a burnt needle, and some others with caustic chemicals, to save the other parts from infection.