Definition of emphysema in English:


Line breaks: em¦phy|se¦ma
Pronunciation: /ˌɛmfɪˈsiːmə


[mass noun] Medicine
  • 1 (also pulmonary emphysema) A condition in which the air sacs of the lungs are damaged and enlarged, causing breathlessness: smoking can lead to serious lung diseases such as emphysema
    More example sentences
    • Remember asthma affects the lung tubes primarily and emphysema the air sacs.
    • Then we need to add chronic lung diseases such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis to the list of smoking-caused illnesses.
    • Other important causes of shortness of breath are asthma, emphysema, pneumonia, and clots to the lung.
  • 2A condition in which air is abnormally present within the body tissues.
    More example sentences
    • Our patient presented with mild dyspnea and dysphonia and demonstrated subcutaneous emphysema and Hamman's sign.
    • Tachycardia may be present, as well as subcutaneous emphysema.
    • She was unable to open her right eye because of the subcutaneous emphysema.


mid 17th century (in sense 2): via late Latin from Greek emphusēma, from emphusan 'puff up'.

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