bron·​chi·​ec·​ta·​sis ˌbräŋ-kē-ˈek-tə-səs How to pronounce bronchiectasis (audio)
plural bronchiectases ˌbräŋ-kē-ˈek-tə-ˌsēz How to pronounce bronchiectasis (audio)
: a chronic dilatation of bronchi or bronchioles

Examples of bronchiectasis in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web There was a little scarring — where the narrow treelike branches of the airways got stretched out and baggy in what was called bronchiectasis. Lisa Sanders, M.d., New York Times, 6 Apr. 2023 For example, bronchitis, lung cancer, bronchiectasis, other types of pneumonia, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are some of the other things that can cause hemoptysis, which is the medical term for coughing up blood. Bruce Y. Lee, Forbes, 1 May 2022 The walls of the lungs' small airways can become thickened because of chronic inflammation and infection (bronchiectasis) or inflamed or injured (bronchiolitis). SELF, 26 Nov. 2020 This syndrome is a sign that the nails weren't able to grow correctly and is often due to a lung condition called bronchiectasis or lymphatic disease. Amy Marturana Winderl, SELF, 26 July 2021 In a recent study by the global pharmaceutical company Insmed, which is funding the new trial, this drug reduced inflammation in people with a chronic respiratory condition called bronchiectasis. Esther Landhuis, Scientific American, 28 Apr. 2020 The cause was complications from bronchiectasis, a lung disease, said a daughter, Rose Devitt. Washington Post, 29 Nov. 2019 An irreversible condition that causes widening and scarring of the airways, bronchiectasis impairs the ability of the lungs to clear out mucus, creating a breeding ground for bacteria that leads to repeated, damaging lung infections. Sandra G. Boodman,, 5 Apr. 2018 Mimi's breathing problems at birth were a key indicator, as was bronchiectasis. Sandra G. Boodman,, 5 Apr. 2018

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'bronchiectasis.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


bronchi- + New Latin ectasis "expansion of a hollow or tubular organ, dilatation," after French bronchiectasie or German Bronchiektasis — more at atelectasis

Note: The term was apparently introduced, perhaps independently, as bronchiectasie by the French physician Pierre-Adolphe Piorry (1794-1879) in Traité de diagnostic et de séméiologie, vol. 1 (Paris, 1840), p. 486 and passim; and as Bronchiektasis by the German physican Karl Ewald Hasse (1810-1902) in Anatomische Beschreibung der Krankheiten der Circulations- und Respirations-Organe, Band 1 of Specielle pathologische Anatomie (Leipzig, 1841), p. 390. The condition was described earlier by the French physicans Gabriel Andral and René Laënnec as dilatation des bronches.

First Known Use

1851, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of bronchiectasis was in 1851

Dictionary Entries Near bronchiectasis

Cite this Entry

“Bronchiectasis.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Jun. 2024.

Medical Definition


bron·​chi·​ec·​ta·​sis ˌbräŋ-kē-ˈek-tə-səs How to pronounce bronchiectasis (audio)
variants also bronchiectasia
plural bronchiectases -ˌsēz How to pronounce bronchiectasis (audio) also bronchiectasias -zh(ē-)əz How to pronounce bronchiectasis (audio)
: a chronic inflammatory or degenerative condition of one or more bronchi or bronchioles marked by dilatation and loss of elasticity of the walls
bronchiectatic adjective

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