noun, plural stomata [stoh-muh-tuh, stom-uh-, stoh-mah-tuh] , stomas.
Also, stomate. Botany. any of various small apertures, especially one of the minute orifices or slits in the epidermis of leaves, stems, etc., through which gases are exchanged.
Zoology. a mouth or ingestive opening, especially when in the form of a small or simple aperture.
Medicine/Medical. an artificial opening between two hollow organs or between one hollow organ and the outside of the body, constructed to permit the passage of body fluids or waste products.

1675–85; < Neo-Latin < Greek stóma mouth

stomal, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
stoma (ˈstəʊmə)
n , pl stomata
1.  botany an epidermal pore, present in large numbers in plant leaves, that controls the passage of gases into and out of a plant
2.  zoology, anatomy a mouth or mouthlike part
3.  surgery colostomy See ileostomy an artificial opening made in a tubular organ, esp the colon or ileum
[C17: via New Latin from Greek: mouth]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

"orifice, small opening in an animal body," 1684, from Mod.L., from Gk. stoma (gen. stomatos) "mouth," from PIE base *stom-en-, denoting various body parts and orifices (cf. Avestan staman- "mouth" (of a dog), Hittite shtamar "mouth," M.Bret. staffn "mouth, jawbone," Corn. stefenic "palate"). Surgical
sense is attested from 1937.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

stoma sto·ma (stō'mə)
n. pl. sto·mas or sto·ma·ta (-mə-tə)

  1. A minute opening or pore, as in the surface of a membrane.

  2. A mouthlike opening, such as the oral cavity of a nematode.

  3. A surgically constructed opening, especially one made in the abdominal wall to permit the passage of waste.

sto'mal adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
stoma   (stō'mə)  Pronunciation Key 
Plural stomata (stō'mə-tə)
  1. Botany One of the tiny openings in the epidermis of a plant, through which gases and water vapor pass. Stomata permit the absorption of carbon dioxide necessary for photosynthesis from the air, as well as the removal of excess oxygen. Stomata occur on all living plant parts that have contact with the air; they are especially abundant on leaves. A single leaf may have many thousands of stomata. Each stoma is generally between 10 to 30 microns in length and is surrounded by a pair of crescent-shaped cells, called guard cells. The guard cells can change shape and close the stoma in order to prevent the loss of water vapor. See Note at transpiration.

  2. Zoology A mouthlike opening, such as the oral cavity of a nematode.

  3. Medicine A temporary or permanent opening in a body surface, especially the abdomen or throat, that is created by a surgical procedure, such as a colostomy or tracheostomy.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
To perform ileostomy, the surgeon makes a small opening in the lower right corner of the abdomen called a stoma.
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