dis·​ten·​sion | \ di-ˈsten(t)-shən How to pronounce distension (audio) \
variants: or distention

Definition of distension

: the act of distending or the state of being distended especially unduly or abnormally

Examples of distension in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Severe, self-resolving gastric distension has been reported. James M. Smoliga, Harper's Magazine, 22 June 2021 Anuli had been under treatment since October for episodes of abdominal distension, specifically of her rumen, the first stomach of a ruminant which is where microbial fermentation takes place. Mckenna Oxenden, baltimoresun.com, 5 Mar. 2021 Anuli had been undergoing treatment since October for episodes of abdominal distension in her rumen, the first compartment in her stomach, according to the zoo. Gabrielle Chung, PEOPLE.com, 5 Mar. 2021 Experiencing distension alongside that sensation can be normal, too. Natasha Lavender, SELF, 14 Oct. 2020 Patients can have distension and bloating of the abdomen. Kristen Jordan Shamus, Detroit Free Press, 16 Aug. 2019 Gastric distension caused by sparkling water’s CO2 bubbles can decrease the pressure of the lower esophageal sphincter, which can then promote acid reflux, Dr. Chowdhry says. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, 5 Apr. 2019 The first is speedily drawing water into your small intestine, causing gas, bloating, distension, and diarrhea. Good Housekeeping, 4 Sep. 2017 All of this can cause spasms and distension in your large intestine during the digestive process, which can be pretty painful, Jamile Wakim-Fleming, M.D., a gastroenterologist at the Cleveland Clinic, tells SELF. Korin Miller, SELF, 14 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'distension.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of distension

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for distension

Middle English distensioun, from Latin distention-, distentio, from distendere

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The first known use of distension was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Distension.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/distension. Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for distension


variants: or distention \ dis-​ˈten-​chən How to pronounce distension (audio) \

Medical Definition of distension

: the act of distending or the state of being distended especially unduly or abnormally no noticeable distension of the abdomen— Benjamin Spock

More from Merriam-Webster on distension

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for distension

Britannica English: Translation of distension for Arabic Speakers


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