A local accumulation of pus anywhere in the body. The following are some examples of abscesses: {{}}A skin abscess is better known as a common boil; A peritonsillar abscess is a persistent collection of pus behind the tonsils; and A perianal abscess is a pool of pus that forms next to the anus, often causing considerable tenderness and swelling in that area and pain on sitting down and on defecating.
* * *
1. A circumscribed collection of purulent exudate frequently associated with swelling and other signs of inflammation. 2. A cavity formed by liquefactive necrosis within solid tissue. [L. abscessus, a going away]
- acute a. a recently formed a. with little or no fibrosis in the wall of the cavity. SYN: hot a..
- alveolar a. an a. situated within the alveolar process of the jaws, most often caused by extension of infection from an adjacent nonvital tooth. SYN: dental a., dentoalveolar a., root a..
- amebic a. an area of liquefaction necrosis of the liver or other organ containing amebae, often following amebic dysentery. SYN: tropical a..
- apical a. SYN: periapical a..
- appendiceal a. an intraperitoneal a., usually in the right iliac fossa, resulting from extension of infection in acute appendicitis, especially with perforation of the appendix. SYN: periappendiceal a..
- Bartholin a. an a. of the vulvovaginal gland.
- Bezold a. an a. deep to the superior part of the sternocleidomastoid muscle due to suppurative destruction of the mastoid tip cells in mastoiditis.
- bicameral a. an a. with two separate cavities or chambers.
- Brodie a. a chronic a. of bone surrounded by dense fibrous tissue and sclerotic bone.
- bursal a. suppuration within a bursa.
- caseous a. an a. containing white solid or semisolid material of cheeselike consistency; usually tuberculous. SEE ALSO: cheesy a..
- cheesy a. an a. that contains necrotic tissue with a cheeselike consistency; typically seen in tuberculosis. SEE ALSO: caseous a..
- cholangitic a. (ko-lan-ji′-tik) a focal area of pus formation in the liver resulting from infection arising in the biliary tract.
- chronic a. a long-standing collection of pus surrounded by fibrous tissue.
- cold a. an a. without heat or other usual signs of inflammation;
- crypt abscesses abscesses in crypts of Lieberkühn of the large intestinal mucosa; a characteristic feature of ulcerative colitis.
- dental a., dentoalveolar a. SYN: alveolar a..
- diffuse a. a collection of pus not circumscribed by a well-defined capsule.
- dry a. the remains of an a. after the pus is absorbed.
- Dubois abscesses small cysts of the thymus containing polymorphonuclear leukocytes but lined by squamous epithelium; reported in congenital syphilis but also found in the absence of syphilis. SYN: Dubois disease, thymic abscesses.
- embolic a. an a. arising distal to the point of arrest of a septic embolus.
- fecal a. SYN: stercoral a..
- follicular a. an a. in a hair, tonsillar, or other follicle.
- gas a. an a. containing gas. Frequently caused by gas-forming organisms such as Enterobacter aerogenes or Escherichia coli.
- gingival a. an a. confined to the gingival soft tissue. SYN: gumboil, parulis.
- gravitation a. SYN: perforating a..
- gummatous a. an a. due to the softening and breaking down of a gumma, especially in bone.
- hematogenous a. an a. caused by blood-borne organisms.
- hot a. SYN: acute a..
- hypostatic a. SYN: perforating a..
- ischiorectal a. an a. involving the ischiorectal fossa.
- lateral alveolar a. an alveolar a. located along the lateral root surface of a tooth. SYN: pericemental a..
- lateral periodontal a. an a. that forms at the depth of a periodontal pocket due to multiplication of pyogenic microorganisms or the presence of foreign material.
- mastoid a. an a. due to coalescence of the mastoid air cells in mastoiditis.
- metastatic a. a secondary a. formed, at a distance from the primary focus, as a result of the transportation of pyogenic bacteria by the lymph or bloodstream.
- migrating a. SYN: perforating a..
- miliary a. one of a number of minute collections of pus, widely disseminated throughout an area or the whole body.
- Munro a. SYN: Munro microabscess.
- orbital a. a collection of pus between the orbital periosteum and the lamina papyracea; frequently an extension of purulent infection of the paranasal sinuses, usually the ethmoids.
- otitic a. a brain a., usually involving the temporal lobe or cerebellar hemisphere, secondary to suppuration of the middle ear.
- palatal a. 1. a lateral periodontal a. associated with the lingual surface of a maxillary tooth; 2. an alveolar a. that has eroded the cortical plate, allowing extension into the palatal soft tissues.
- pancreatic a. an a. in the pancreatic or peripancreatic area usually related to pancreatitis.
- parafrenal a. an a. that occurs on either side of the frenum of the penis.
- parametric a., parametritic a. an a. in the connective tissue of the broad ligament of the uterus.
- paranephric a. an a. in the region of the kidney, outside the renal fascia.
- parapharyngeal a. an a. lying lateral to the pharynx.
- parotid a. suppuration in the parotid gland; an often rapidly progressing complication of parotitis.
- Pautrier a. SYN: Pautrier microabscess.
- pelvic a. an a. in the pelvic peritoneal cavity, developing as a complication of diffuse peritonitis or of localized peritonitis associated with abdominal or pelvic inflammatory disease, such as salpingitis; the pus frequently collects in the rectovesical or rectouterine pouch.
- perforating a. an a. that breaks down tissue barriers to enter adjacent areas. SYN: gravitation a., hypostatic a., migrating a., wandering a..
- periapical a. an alveolar a. localized around the apex of a tooth root. SYN: apical a., apical periodontal a..
- periappendiceal a. SYN: appendiceal a..
- periarticular a. an a. surrounding a joint, but not necessarily involving it.
- pericoronal a. an a. developing in the inflamed dental follicular tissue overlying the crown of a partially erupted tooth.
- perinephric a. an a. within Gerota fascia but outside the renal capsule.
- perirectal a. an a. in connective tissue adjacent to the rectum or anus.
- peritonsillar a. extension of tonsillar infection beyond the tonsillar capsule with a. formation between the capsule and the musculature of the tonsillar fossa.
- periureteral a. an a. surrounding the ureter.
- periurethral a. an a. involving the tissues around the urethra, particularly the corpus spongiosum.
- phlegmonous a. circumscribed suppuration characterized by intense surrounding inflammatory reaction that produces induration and thickening of the affected area.
- Pott a. tuberculous a. of the spine.
- premammary a. an a. in the subcutaneous tissue covering the mammary gland.
- psoas a. an a., usually tuberculous, originating in tuberculous spondylitis and extending through the iliopsoas muscle to the inguinal region.
- pulp a. an a. involving the soft tissue within the pulp chamber of a tooth, usually a sequela of caries or less frequently of trauma.
- pyemic a. a hematogenous a. resulting from pyemia, septicemia, or bacteremia. SYN: septicemic a..
- radicular a. alveolar a., an a. around a tooth root.
- residual a. an a. recurring at the site of a former a. resulting from persistence of microbes and pus.
- retrobulbar a. an a. posterior to the globe of the eye.
- retrocecal a. an a. located posterior to the cecum, usually resulting from perforation of a retrocecal appendix.
- retropharyngeal a. an a. arising, usually, in retropharyngeal lymph node s, most commonly in infants.
- root a. SYN: alveolar a..
- satellite a. an a. closely associated with a primary a..
- septicemic a. SYN: pyemic a..
- stellate a. a star-shaped necrotic area surrounded by histiocytes, seen within swollen lymph node s in lymphogranuloma venereum and cat scratch fever.
- stercoral a. a collection of pus and feces. SYN: fecal a..
- sterile a. 1. an a. whose contents are not caused by pyogenic bacteria. 2. an a. that when aspirated or cultured does not grow bacteria.
- stitch a. SYN: suture a..
- subepidermal a. a microscopic a. located in the dermis just beneath the epidermis.
- subhepatic a. an a. located immediately beneath the liver.
- subperiosteal a. an a. between the periosteum and cortical plate of the bone.
- subphrenic a. an a. directly beneath the diaphragm. SYN: subdiaphragmatic a..
- subungual a. suppuration extending beneath a fingernail or toenail, usually from a paronychia.
- sudoriferous a. a collection of pus in a sweat gland.
- suture a. a purulent exudate surrounding a stitch, particularly a corneal stitch. SYN: stitch a..
- thymic abscesses SYN: Dubois abscesses.
- Tornwaldt a. chronic infection of the pharyngeal bursa. SEE ALSO: Tornwaldt syndrome.
- tropical a. SYN: amebic a..
- tuboovarian a. a large a. involving a uterine tube and an adherent ovary, resulting from extension of purulent inflammation of the tube.
- verminous a. SYN: worm a..
- wandering a. SYN: perforating a..
- worm a. a. due to parasitic worms or in which worms are found. SYN: verminous a..

* * *

ab·scess 'ab-.ses n, pl ab·scess·es 'ab-səs-.ēz, -.ses-, -əz a localized collection of pus surrounded by inflamed tissue
ab·scessed -.sest adj

* * *

a localized collection of pus anywhere in the body, surrounded and walled off by damaged and inflamed tissues. A boil is an example of an abscess within the skin. The usual cause is local bacterial infection, often by staphylococci, that the body's defences have failed to overcome. In a cold abscess, due to tubercle organisms, there is swelling, but little pain or inflammation (as in acute abscesses). Antibiotics, aided by surgical incision to release pus where necessary, are the usual forms of treatment.
The brain and its meninges have a low resistance to infection and a cerebral abscess is liable to follow any penetration of these by microorganisms. The condition is fatal unless relieved by aspiration or surgical drainage.

* * *

ab·scess (abґses) [L. abscessus, from ab away + cedere to go] a localized collection of pus within tissues, organs, or confined spaces. See also empyema.

Cross section of abscess.

Medical dictionary. 2011.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Abscess — Ab scess, n.; pl. {Abscesses}. [L. abscessus a going away, gathering of humors, abscess, fr. abscessus, p. p. of absedere to go away; ab, abs + cedere to go off, retire. See {Cede}.] (Med.) A collection of pus or purulent matter in any tissue or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Abscess — (englisch Abscess Abszess ) ist der Name: einer Elektronik Formation aus Deutschland; siehe Abscess (Deutschland) einer US amerikanischen Death Metal Combo; siehe Abscess (USA) Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • abscess — abscess, boil, furuncle, carbuncle, pimple, pustule all denote a localized swollen area of infection containing pus. Abscess is the most general term, applying to a collection of pus surrounded by inflammation whether in the skin or in the… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • abscess — (n.) 1610s, from L. abscessus an abscess (Celsus), lit. a going away, from stem of abscedere withdraw, from ab away (see AB (Cf. ab )) + cedere to go (see CEDE (Cf. cede)). The notion is that humors go from the body through the pus in t …   Etymology dictionary

  • abscess — [ab′ses΄] n. [L abscessus < abscedere, to go from < ab(s) , from + cedere, to go: from the notion that humors go from the body into the swelling] a swollen, inflamed area in body tissues, in which pus gathers vi. to form an abscess… …   English World dictionary

  • abscess — [n] swelling boil, carbuncle, pustule, ulcer; concepts 306,309 …   New thesaurus

  • abscess — ► NOUN ▪ a swollen area within body tissue, containing pus. ORIGIN Latin abscessus, from abscedere go away …   English terms dictionary

  • Abscess — This article is about the medical condition. For the death metal band, see Abscess (band). Abscess Classification and external resources Abscess ICD 10 L02 …   Wikipedia

  • abscess — abscessed, adj. /ab ses/, n. Pathol. a localized collection of pus in the tissues of the body, often accompanied by swelling and inflammation and frequently caused by bacteria. [1535 45; < L abscessus a going away, abscess, equiv. to absced , var …   Universalium

  • abscess — noun VERB + ABSCESS ▪ have ▪ develop, get ▪ I developed an abscess on my neck. ▪ cause ▪ drain …   Collocations dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”