- Omphalo- (combining form)
- Omphalo- is a combining form that indicates a relationship to the umbilicus (the navel). For example, "omphal-" combined with "-itis" = omphalitis, inflammation of the umbilicus. (The suffix "-itis" refers to inflammation.) For a second example, "omphal-" combined with "-cele", = omphalocele, a birth defect in which the intestine enclosed within a sac protrudes outside the abdomen at the umbilicus. (The suffix "-cele" refers to a hernia or rupture.) And for a third example, "omphalo-" combined with "-tomy" = omphalotomy, the cutting of the umbilical cord. (The suffix "-tomy" refers to a cutting or incision.) "Omphalo-" is from "omphalos", the Greek word for the navel. The decorative boss protruding from the center of a Greek warrior's shield was called the omphalos, as was the knob at the center of a yoke. The omphalos was the "center of anything." The omphalos in the temple of Apollo at Delphi was a rounded conical stone; it was sacred and marked what the ancient Greeks believed to be the central point of the earth.
Medical dictionary. 2011.