biliary atresia

noun

Medical Definition of biliary atresia

: a life-threatening congenital condition marked by the absence, underdevelopment, or blockage of the chiefly extrahepatic bile ducts

Note: Symptoms of jaundice, darkened urine, pale stools, and liver enlargement usually appear within the first several weeks of birth. Without treatment, bile accumulates inside the liver leading to scarring and impaired liver function.

… in infants with biliary atresia, the bile backs up, causing liver inflammation, yellowing of the skin and an inability to properly digest fatty foods.— Kathy A. Fackelmann, Science News, 6 July 1991

Learn More about biliary atresia

Cite this Entry

“Biliary atresia.” Merriam-Webster.com Medical Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/medical/biliary%20atresia. Accessed 2 Dec. 2020.

Comments on biliary atresia

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

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!