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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ A pain like the worst toothache clutched her vitals.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Vitals \Vi"tals\, n. pl.

  1. Organs that are necessary for life; more especially, the heart, lungs, and brain.

  2. Fig.: The part essential to the life or health of anything; as, the vitals of a state. ``The vitals of the public body.''

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

"organs of the body essential to life," c.1600, from noun use of adjective vital, perhaps on model of Latin vitalia "vital force," neuter plural of vitalis.


n. 1 (context plurale tantum English) Those organs of the body that are essential for life. 2 (context plurale tantum figuratively English) Those parts of a system without which it cannot function. 3 (context medicine plurale tantum English) vital signs


n. a bodily organ that is essential for life [syn: vital organ]

Vitals (novel)

Vitals is a 2002 science fiction/ techno-thriller novel written by Greg Bear, and nominated for a John W. Campbell Memorial Award in 2002.

It centres on Hal Cousins, a scientist who wishes to find a way to prevent death. He gets his funding from angel investors - rich businessmen who are keen to live a thousand years. However, on a fact-finding exploration in a small submarine, his pilot goes berserk, starts spouting gibberish, and tries to kill him. He survives, but when he gets back to the ship, he finds that a member of the crew also went mad and started spouting gibberish, killing four scientists on board the ship. The rest of the crew is distant from him, on the grounds of what he calls bad mojo. He is disowned by the sponsor in question. Hal's twin brother Rob is shot, by who is later revealed to be Ben Bridger.

The story develops from there, taking in his twin brother's widow, Lissa; Rudy Banning, a once respected professor and writer turned into an anti-semitic conspiracy theorist by a brain-altering microbe; and a scheming group of immortals who want to stay unique. They are able to do this because they have access to bacteriological research by Russian scientist Maxim Golokhov from the 1940s who was working for Beria and Stalin. Stalin possibly cameos in the story, but the issue is left vague.

There are five parts with different first-person narrators. Parts one, three, and five are narrated by Hal Cousins, and parts two and four are narrated by Benjamin Bridger.

By the end of the book, the main characters are all either dead, irrelevant, or the victim of mind-altering xenophages.

Some elements of the book relate to transhumanism and life extension. Biology is a major theme in Bear's work, and bacteria and bacterial intelligence played a central role in his 1983 novel Blood Music as well.

Vitals (website)

Vitals is an online resource for patients to find doctors and medical facilities. The site focuses on doctors, dentists, psychologists, urgent care centers, group practices and hospitals. Vitals claims to collect over 1.4 billion points of data on doctors, including patient reviews. It differentiates itself by remaining free for both consumers and doctors to use.

Originally launched in 2008, Vitals has grown to be the 13th largest health website according to comScore, and peaked as the 362nd most visited website in the United States. In addition to being a health provider and medical facility search service, the site provides content on preparing for a doctor visit and has scheduling tools for patients to book appointments with doctors online.

Vitals (Mutemath album)

Vitals is the fourth full-length release from New Orleans group Mutemath. The album was released on November 13, 2015. It is the group's first release on their own imprint label Wojtek Records, following their departure from Warner Bros. Records and the dissolution of Teleprompt Records. It is also the first studio album featuring Todd Gummerman since he joined the group in 2011.

Usage examples of "vitals".

His wounded head beat with tremendous and straining painfulness, as though it would burst asunder, and he was possessed by a burning thirst that seemed to consume his very vitals.