noun \ˌdī-ə-ˈrē-ə\

medical : an illness that causes you to pass waste from your body very frequently and in liquid rather than solid form

Full Definition of DIARRHEA

:  abnormally frequent intestinal evacuations with more or less fluid stools
:  excessive flow <verbal diarrhea>
di·ar·rhe·al \-ˈrē-əl\ adjective
di·ar·rhe·ic \-ˈrē-ik\ adjective
di·ar·rhet·ic \-ˈre-tik\ adjective

Examples of DIARRHEA

  1. The symptoms of the disease include fever, nausea, and diarrhea.
  2. <I was taken with severe diarrhea while attending the conference.>

Origin of DIARRHEA

Middle English diaria, from Late Latin diarrhoea, from Greek diarrhoia, from diarrhein to flow through, from dia- + rhein to flow — more at stream
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Medicine Terms

analgesia, angina, diabetes, hepatitis, homeopathy, logorrhea, palliate, pandemic


noun    (Medical Dictionary)

Medical Definition of DIARRHEA

: abnormally frequent intestinal evacuations with more or less fluid stools

Variants of DIARRHEA

di·ar·rhea or chiefly British di·ar·rhoea \ˌdī-ə-ˈrē-ə\


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Abnormally fast passage of waste material through the large intestine, resulting in frequent defecation with loose feces and sometimes cramps. Causes range widely and can include cholera, dysentery, highly seasoned foods or high alcohol intake, poisons (including food poisoning), drug side effects, and Graves' disease. Mild cases of diarrhea are treated with bismuth subsalicylate (trade name Pepto-Bismol); extreme cases are treated with fluid and electrolyte replacement while the underlying disease passes. Traveler's diarrhea affects up to half of people who travel to developing countries. Its prevention includes taking bismuth subsalicylate tablets, drinking only bottled or canned beverages, and eating only peeled fruits, canned products, and restaurant food that is well-cooked. Severe cases require antibiotics. In cases of severe malnutrition, diarrhea is potentially lethal, and it is responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths annually in underdeveloped countries.


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