[ ik-skres-uh ns ]
/ ɪkˈskrɛs əns /


an abnormal outgrowth, usually harmless, on an animal or vegetable body.
a normal outgrowth, as hair or horns.
any disfiguring addition.
abnormal growth or increase.

Nearby words

  1. excrement,
  2. excremental,
  3. excrementally,
  4. excrementitious,
  5. excrementous,
  6. excrescency,
  7. excrescent,
  8. excrescently,
  9. excreta,
  10. excrete

Origin of excrescence

First recorded in 1375–1425; late Middle English word from Latin word excrēscentia. See excrescent, -ence

Related formssu·per·ex·cres·cence, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for excrescence

British Dictionary definitions for excrescence


/ (ɪkˈskrɛsəns) /


a projection or protuberance, esp an outgrowth from an organ or part of the body
Derived Formsexcrescential (ˌɛkskrɪˈsɛnʃəl), adjective

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for excrescence



early 15c., "action of growing out," from Latin excrescentia (plural) "abnormal growths," from excrescentem (nominative excrescens), present participle of excrescere "grow out, grow up," from ex- "out" (see ex-) + crescere "to grow" (see crescent). Meaning "that which grows out abnormally (on a living thing) is from 1570s (excrescency in this sense is 1540s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for excrescence


[ ĭk-skrĕsəns ]


An outgrowth from a surface that may be normal, such as a fingernail, or abnormal, such as a wart.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.