1. A state of normal tension of the tissues by virtue of which the parts are kept in shape, alert, and ready to function in response to a suitable stimulus. In the case of muscle, it refers to a state of continuous activity or tension beyond that related to the physical properties; i.e., it is active resistance to stretch; in skeletal muscle it is dependent upon the efferent innervation. SYN: tonus. 2. The osmotic pressure or tension of a solution, usually relative to that of blood. SEE ALSO: isotonicity. [G. tonos, tone]

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to·nic·i·ty tō-'nis-ət-ē n, pl -ties
1) the property of possessing tone esp healthy vigor of body or mind
2) TONUS (2)
3) the osmotic pressure of a solution <the cells swell and shrink with changing \tonicity of the environment>

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1. the normal state of slight contraction, or readiness to contract, of healthy muscle fibres.
2. the effective osmotic pressure of a solution. See hypertonic, hypotonic, osmosis.

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to·nic·i·ty (to-nisґĭ-te) 1. the state of tissue tone or tension. 2. in body fluid physiology, the effective osmotic pressure equivalent.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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