Definition of distend in English:

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Pronunciation: /dɪˈstɛnd/


Swell or cause to swell by pressure from inside: [no object]: the abdomen distended rapidly [with object]: air is introduced into the stomach to distend it
More example sentences
  • Additionally, there were a few children in the group with thin frames and distended bellies which I normally associate with malnutrition.
  • Her head is swollen and her tiny stomach distended.
  • She is now visibly pregnant, at least, with her clothes off, her belly distended with you and everything around her waist thickening.
swell, bloat, bulge, puff out/up, blow up/out, expand, dilate, inflate, enlarge
rare tumefy, intumesce
swollen, bloated, tumescent, dilated, engorged, enlarged, inflated, stretched, blown up, pumped up/out;
expanded, extended, ballooning, puffy, puffed up;
bulbous, bulging, protuberant, prominent, sticking out
technical turgescent, ventricose
rare tumid



Pronunciation: /dɪstɛndəˈbɪlɪti/
Example sentences
  • Veins are particularly susceptible to gravitational stress due to their distensibility, and blood ‘pools' in dependent veins when we stand.
  • The brachial and carotid arteries were tested for intima-media thickness and arterial distensibility.
  • Isometric handgrip exercise seems to significantly reduce systolic blood pressure and carotid arterial distensibility.


Pronunciation: /dɪˈstɛnsɪb(ə)l/
Example sentences
  • These veins are very thin walled and distensible.
  • Krachie and company are arguing, essentially, that a belly of fat is more compressive than skin and muscle are distensible.
  • The thicker and less distensible the arteries are, the greater the load on the heart.


Pronunciation: /dɪˈstɛnʃ(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • With muscular pain, the pain sensation may be due to distension or stretch of the muscular walls or to transient ischemia of the muscle.
  • During the second stage, pain occurs from distension and stretching of pelvic structures and the perineum.
  • Veins may become visible when the skin is stretched by generalized abdominal distension.


Late Middle English: from Latin distendere, from dis- 'apart' + tendere 'to stretch'.

  • This comes from Latin distendere, from dis- ‘apart’ and tendere ‘to stretch’.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: dis|tend

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