styptic

adjective styp·tic \ ˈstip-tik \

Definition of styptic

:tending to contract or bind :astringent; especially :tending to check bleeding

styptic

noun

styptic was our Word of the Day on 06/02/2013. Hear the podcast!

Recent Examples of styptic from the Web

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Did You Know?

People long ago recognized the power of certain substances to bind or contract organic tissue-a quality that has various uses and benefits. English speakers weren't original in this knowledge, and they copied speakers of Greek, Latin, and Anglo-French when they designated this quality as "styptic" in the Middle Ages. (The word in Greek, "styptikos," is from "styphein," which means "to contract.") One thing that a styptic substance can do is stop bleeding, and almost from the start the word styptic has referred to this quality especially. It has also been applied to things that make your mouth contract, or pucker, as well as to substances that might affect your digestive organs with a "binding" effect.

Origin and Etymology of styptic

Middle English stiptik, from Anglo-French, from Latin stypticus, from Greek styptikos, from styphein to contract


Medical Dictionary

1

styptic

adjective styp·tic \ ˈstip-tik \

medical Definition of styptic

:tending to check bleeding
  • the styptic effect of cold
; especially :having the property of arresting oozing of blood (as from a shallow surface injury) when applied to a bleeding part
  • styptic agent

2

styptic

noun

medical Definition of styptic

:an agent (as a drug) having a styptic effect

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