What are the Meanings of Umlaut?

The umlaut is an orthographic sign that is made up of two points that are written horizontally over a vowel. Typically, the umlaut, also known as cream or cremilla, indicates a certain sound to be pronounced over the affected letter.

The most frequent use of the umlaut in the Spanish language is on the “u” in the syllables “gue” and “gui”, in those words in which the “u” has to be pronounced. For example: the word “vergüenza” has an umlaut in the “u” since, otherwise, it would be pronounced incorrectly. On the other hand, terms such as “war” or “merengue” are written without umlauts since the “u” is not pronounced.

Something similar happens with the syllable “gui”. We can find words like “linguistics” whose letter “u” includes the two horizontal dots to specify its pronunciation, and others like “wink” or “sting”, which do not have umlauts.

In other languages, the function of the umlaut is different. In French and Greek, the umlaut indicates that when there is a pair of vowels, the second must be pronounced separately, without a diphthong or without being mute.

The umlaut is an orthographic sign formed by two horizontal dots.

The umlaut in grammar

The dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy (RAE) recognizes other definitions for the concept of diaeresis. It can be used in grammar to indicate the pronunciation in different syllables of two vowels that form a diphthong ( “ruína/ruïna”, “víuda/vïuda” ).

What the umlaut does, in this case, is undo the diphthong.

The function of the umlaut varies according to the language.

The concept in medicine

In medicine, on the other hand, diaeresis is the set of surgical procedures that allow the division of organic tissues. Soft tissue umlaut is defined as any maneuver performed by a surgeon to force a way through the tissues, which can be achieved by separating or sectioning them.

Tissues can be classified in various ways; if they are grouped according to their consistency, for example, there are the soft and the hard (the teeth, the bones and the corneum). On the other hand, there are normal tissues (such as the subcutaneous tissue, muscles, fasciae and skin ) and abnormally united tissues (adhesions, scars and fibrosis, among others).

Types of umlauts

Also, there are several types of umlauts. The cruenta, for example, is characterized by the effusion of blood that occurs when tissues are sectioned and requires major instruments (including scalpels and dissecting scissors, mouse tooth and little teeth, and separators, such as the left-hand forceps, also called dissection) and complementary instruments (such as the grooved probe).

To perform an umlaut, the scalpel can be held in various ways, depending on the maneuver to be performed (an incision or a puncture) and the resistance of the tissues to be separated, the type and length of the incision, etc. The positions that can be adopted are the following:

* like a pen: when it is necessary to make very precise movements;

* like a normal knife: for very resistant fabrics;

* like the bow of a violin: for horizontal incisions of a certain extent;

* with the non-sharp side down: for the centrifugal umlaut, which is done from the inside out.

The secret of a masterful umlaut, in which common errors known as queues and ramps are not noticed, lies in paying special attention to the following points:

* Start: ensure that the position of the scalpel is perpendicular to the tissue before starting the incision;

* Displacement: As the scalpel is moved, a 45-degree angle should be sought and maintained until within millimeters of the end of the umlaut;

* Completion – The scalpel should be repositioned at 90 degrees to the surface.