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bloodletting

[bluhd-let-ing] /ˈblʌdˌlɛt ɪŋ/
noun
1.
the act or practice of letting blood by opening a vein; phlebotomy.
2.
bloodshed or slaughter.
3.
4.
Informal. severe cutbacks or reduction in personnel, appropriations, etc.:
The company went through a period of bloodletting in the 1970s.
Origin
1175-1225
1175-1225; Middle English blod letunge. See blood, let1, -ing1
Related forms
bloodletter, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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blood letter in Medicine

bloodletting blood·let·ting (blŭd'lět'ĭng)
n.
The theropeutic removal of blood, usually from a vein.


blood'let'ter n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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