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[dee-kuh m-presh-uh n] /ˌdi kəmˈprɛʃ ən/
the gradual reduction in atmospheric pressure experienced by divers, construction workers, etc., after working in deep water or breathing compressed air.
the act or process of releasing from pressure.
Surgery. the procedure of relieving increased cranial, cardiac, or orbital pressure.
a state of relief from pressure; a return to normalcy after a stressful period or situation.
Computers. the restoration of data that has undergone compression to its original state.
Origin of decompression
1900-05; probably < French décompression. See de-, compression Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for decompression
  • It had suffered from rapid decompression syndrome, or the bends.
  • Surgical decompression of the area may reduce symptoms if the disorder is caused by pressure on the nerve.
  • Oxygen toxicity, the narcotic effect of nitrogen and high decompression penalty of helium.
  • It makes me think that the universe is decompressing, in the sense of data decompression, as it grows.
Word Origin and History for decompression

1905, from de- + compression.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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decompression in Medicine

decompression de·com·pres·sion (dē'kəm-prěsh'ən)

  1. The relief of pressure on a body part by surgery.

  2. The restoration of deep sea divers and caisson workers to atmospheric pressure by means of a decompression chamber.

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