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[pree-neyt-l] /priˈneɪt l/
previous to birth or to giving birth:
prenatal care for mothers.
Origin of prenatal
1820-30; pre- + natal
Related forms
prenatally, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for prenatal
  • Most cases are diagnosed after birth now, but if the blood test is widely adopted it could become chiefly a prenatal event.
  • New kinds of ultrasound machines revolutionized prenatal monitoring.
  • Marginalized populations have more health problems related to poor nutrition and prenatal care.
  • In this lesson students work cooperatively to make a pictorial timeline of human prenatal development.
  • While the gender ratio is balancing out, another result has been that far fewer prospective parents are opting for prenatal care.
  • Although it is widely ignored, there is sound scientific evidence that prenatal ultrasound is neither non-invasive nor risk-free.
  • It is urgent that scientists closely examine the role that prenatal ultrasound may be playing in causing autism.
  • She is also certified as a prenatal yoga and aerial yoga teacher.
  • Syphilis screening is a routine part of prenatal care during pregnancy.
  • Getting the proper prenatal care may reduce the risk of some rare causes of cerebral palsy.
British Dictionary definitions for prenatal


occurring or present before birth; during pregnancy
(informal) a prenatal examination
Also called antenatal
Derived Forms
prenatally, adverb
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 prenatal

1826, formed in English from pre- + natal.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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prenatal in Medicine

prenatal pre·na·tal (prē-nāt'l)
Preceding birth. Also called antenatal.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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prenatal in Culture
prenatal [(pree-nayt-l)]

A descriptive term for the period between conception and birth.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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