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[kahr-puh l] /ˈkɑr pəl/ Anatomy
pertaining to the carpus:
the carpal joint.
a carpale.
Origin of carpal
1735-45; < New Latin carpālis. See carpus, -al1
Related forms
intercarpal, adjective
supercarpal, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for carpals
  • The first type of joint is the plane or gliding joint, found in the foot between the tarsals and in the hand among the carpals.
British Dictionary definitions for carpals


  1. any bone of the wrist
  2. (as modifier): carpal bones
Also carpale (kɑːˈpeɪlɪ)
Word Origin
C18: from New Latin carpālis, from Greek karpos wrist
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for carpals



"of the wrist," 1743, from Modern Latin carpalis, from carpus "wrist" (see carpus). Carpal tunnel syndrome attested by 1970, from carpal tunnel, the tunnel-like passage that carries nerves through the wrist.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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carpals in Medicine

carpal car·pal (kär'pəl)
Of, relating to, or near the carpus. n.
Any of the bones of the carpus, including the scaphoid, lunate, triquetrum, pisiform, trapezium, trapezoid, capitate, and hamate bones.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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carpals in Science
Adjective  Relating to or involving the wrist.

Noun  Any of the bones of the human wrist or the joint corresponding to the wrist in some other vertebrates, such as dinosaurs.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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