peri·​stal·​tic ˌper-ə-ˈstȯl-tik How to pronounce peristaltic (audio)
: of, relating to, resulting from, or being peristalsis
: having an action suggestive of peristalsis

Examples of peristaltic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Many have suckers at the front end, to attach to the bowel of the host; some have hooks that can be engaged or released depending on whether the worm needs to move with or against the peristaltic flow of the intestine itself. Jerome Groopman, The New Yorker, 5 Dec. 2022 Ingber and his colleagues are working on analogous models of other organs, too, including a beating heart and a gut capable of a peristaltic wave. Valerie Ross, Discover Magazine, 15 Dec. 2010 So its possible to create an artificial peristaltic contraction wave that travels in one direction along the length of the soft robotic organ. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 29 Dec. 2021 For instance, a good candidate for an artificial esophagus is a soft robotic peristaltic pumping system (known by its acronym SBPP), developed by Tauber (then Esser) and several colleagues in 2017. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 29 Dec. 2021 Rauch sometimes speaks of his art as a peristaltic filtration system that pulls in everything around him, and lately there had been so much political dirt in circulation that caution seemed advisable. Thomas Meaney, The New Yorker, 27 Sep. 2021 This greater expandability and lack of peristaltic motion may have meant that the competitive eater was less likely to feel full and uncomfortable. Bruce Y. Lee, Forbes, 5 July 2021 Dr Woods suspected that, in an evolutionary two-for-one, this peristaltic action is also moving oxygen. The Economist, 13 July 2017

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

Word History


Greek peristaltikos, from peristellein to wrap around, from peri- + stellein to place

First Known Use

1652, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of peristaltic was in 1652

Dictionary Entries Near peristaltic

Cite this Entry

“Peristaltic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2024.

Medical Definition


peri·​stal·​tic -tik How to pronounce peristaltic (audio)
: of, relating to, resulting from, or being peristalsis
peristaltic contractions

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