Definition of sterilization in English:


(British sterilisation)


mass noun
  • 1The process of making something free from bacteria or other living microorganisms.

    ‘disinfection and sterilization of surgical equipment’
    count noun ‘the food processing plant has undergone three sterilizations supervised by a microbiologist’
    • ‘One of the issues that led to the suspension is the sterilisation of trucks transporting animals to abattoirs.’
    • ‘Plastic syringes can be sterilized in a microwave oven, which is another method of heat sterilization.’
    • ‘Given the state of their drinking water, anything that offered a little sterilisation could add a few years to a person's life.’
    • ‘Tensile-strength data collected before and after sterilization can help predict any changes in the strength of the material.’
    • ‘For more than 40 years ago, this processing has proven very effective for the sterilization of medical products.’
  • 2Surgery to make a person or animal unable to produce offspring.

    ‘she had three children and had undergone sterilization’
    count noun ‘in the years preceding the case, the number of sterilizations performed there rose dramatically’
    • ‘The eugenics movement lobbied fiercely in favour of measures of forced sterilization for entire categories of the population.’
    • ‘One of the girls was adopted, but the rest of the family moved around a lot to avoid fines or sterilization.’
    • ‘They continue to make the assertion that contraception, sterilization, and abortion-inducing drugs are part of healthcare.’
    • ‘In their story about contraception, they discreetly avoid mention of sterilization.’
    • ‘As a young man, he advocated sterilization for "mental defectives."’