Definition of operation noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˌɒpəˈreɪʃn//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˌɑːpəˈreɪʃn//
    Operations, Running a business, Computer programming
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  1. 1  (also British English, informal op) [countable] the process of cutting open a part of a person’s body in order to remove or repair a damaged part Will I need to have an operation? He underwent a three-hour heart operation. operation (on somebody/something) (to do something) an operation on her lung to remove a tumour operation (on somebody/something) (for something) Doctors performed an emergency operation for appendicitis last night. WordfinderA & E, admit, consultant, doctor, hospital, ICU, inpatient, nurse, operation, ward CollocationsIllnessesBecoming ill catch a cold/​an infectious disease/​the flu/(British English) flu/​pneumonia/​a virus/(informal) a bug get (British English) ill/(North American English) sick/​a disease/​AIDS/​breast cancer/​a cold/​the flu/(British English) flu/​a migraine come down with a cold/​the flu/(British English) flu contract a deadly disease/​a serious illness/​HIV/​AIDS be infected with a virus/​a parasite/​HIV develop cancer/​diabetes/​a rash/​an ulcer/​symptoms of hepatitis have a heart attack/​a stroke provoke/​trigger/​produce an allergic reaction block/​burst/​rupture a blood vessel damage/​sever a nerve/​an artery/​a tendonBeing ill feel (British English) ill/​sick/​nauseous/​queasy be running (British English) a temperature/(North American English) a fever have a head cold/​diabetes/​heart disease/​lung cancer/​a headache/(British English) a high temperature/(North American English) a fever suffer from asthma/​malnutrition/​frequent headaches/​bouts of depression/​a mental disorder be laid up with/ (British English) be in bed with a cold/​the flu/(British English) flu/​a migraine nurse a cold/​a headache/​a hangover battle/​fight cancer/​depression/​addiction/​alcoholismTreatments examine a patient diagnose a condition/​disease/​disorder be diagnosed with cancer/​diabetes/​schizophrenia prescribe/​be given/​be on/​take drugs/​medicine/​medication/​pills/​painkillers/​antibiotics treat somebody for cancer/​depression/​shock have/​undergo an examination/​an operation/​surgery/​a kidney transplant/​therapy/​chemotherapy/​treatment for cancer have/​be given an injection/(British English) a flu jab/(North American English) a flu shot/​a blood transfusion/​a scan/​an X-ray cure a disease/​an ailment/​cancer/​a headache/​a patient prevent the spread of disease/​further outbreaks/​damage to the lungs be vaccinated against the flu/(British English) flu/​the measles/(British English) measles/​polio/​smallpox enhance/​boost/​confer/​build immunity to a disease Wordfinderamputate, anaesthetic, graft, operation, procedure, scalpel, scrubs, stitch, surgery, transplant See related entries: Operations
  2. organized activity
  3. 2  [countable] an organized activity that involves several people doing different things a security operation The police have launched a major operation against drug suppliers. the UN peacekeeping operations
  4. business
  5. 3  [countable, usually plural] a business or company involving many parts a huge multinational operation See related entries: Running a business
  6. 4  [countable] the activity or work done in an area of business or industry the firm’s banking operations overseas See related entries: Running a business
  7. computer
  8. 5  [countable, uncountable] an act performed by a machine, especially a computer The whole operation is performed in less than three seconds. See related entries: Computer programming
  9. machine/system
  10. 6  [uncountable] the way that parts of a machine or a system work; the process of making something work Regular servicing guarantees the smooth operation of the engine. Operation of the device is extremely simple.
  11. military activity
  12. 7[countable, usually plural] military activity He was the officer in charge of operations.
  13. mathematics
  14. 8[countable] a process in which a number or quantity is changed by adding, multiplying, etc.
  15. Word Originlate Middle English: via Old French from Latin operatio(n-), from the verb operari ‘expend labour on’, from opus, oper- ‘work’.Extra examples He had an operation to remove a growth. She came through the operation very well. She woke during the operation. Special operations forces were on the ground in Afghanistan. The airline has appointed a new director of flight operations. The authorities launched a massive security operation in the city. The current tax system has been in operation for ten years. The factory will cease operation at the end of the year. The machine can get very hot during operation. UN troops supervised the relief operations. US forces had to conduct ground and air operations. a delicate eye operation a major operation on his heart a tricky rescue operation an operation for a kidney problem during joint military operations restrictions placed on business operations the only reactor in full operation the smooth day-to-day operation of the department the surgeon performing the operation A major rescue operation was launched after two divers were reported missing. He’s the chief co-ordinator of the UN peacekeeping operation. It was a tricky operation to get all the barrels safely down on to the road. It’s a huge multinational operation. Network Computing Inc. plans to open a UK operation in Britain next year. She was the officer in charge of operations. The firm’s banking operations overseas have been affected by the disaster. They could not pledge long-term commitment to the Scottish manufacturing operation. Will I need to have an operation?Idioms to start working; to start having an effect synonym come/enter into force The new rules come into operation from next week. working, being used or having an effect The system has been in operation for six months. Temporary traffic controls are in operation on New Road.
    put something into operation
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    to make something start working; to start using something It's time to put our plan into operation.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: operation