tenesmus

noun
te·​nes·​mus | \ tə-ˈnez-məs How to pronounce tenesmus (audio) \

Definition of tenesmus

: a distressing but ineffectual urge to evacuate the rectum or bladder

First Known Use of tenesmus

1527, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for tenesmus

borrowed from Latin tēnesmos, tēnesmus, borrowed from Greek teinesmós, from teínein "to stretch, strain" + -esmos, suffix of action nouns — more at tenant entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about tenesmus

Time Traveler for tenesmus

Time Traveler

The first known use of tenesmus was in 1527

See more words from the same year

Statistics for tenesmus

Cite this Entry

“Tenesmus.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tenesmus. Accessed 28 Feb. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for tenesmus

tenesmus

noun
te·​nes·​mus | \ tə-ˈnez-məs How to pronounce tenesmus (audio) \

Medical Definition of tenesmus

: a distressing but ineffectual urge to evacuate the rectum or urinary bladder

Comments on tenesmus

What made you want to look up tenesmus? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!