metastasize

[muh-tas-tuh-sahyz]
verb (used without object), me·tas·ta·sized, me·tas·ta·siz·ing.
  1. Pathology. (of malignant cells or disease-producing organisms) to spread to other parts of the body by way of the blood or lymphatic vessels or membranous surfaces.
  2. to spread injuriously: Street gangs have metastasized in our city.
  3. to transform, especially into a dangerous form: The KGB metastasized after the fall of the Soviet Union. Truth metastasized into lurid fantasy.
Also especially British, me·tas·ta·sise.

Origin of metastasize

First recorded in 1905–10; metastas(is) + -ize
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for metastasise

metastasize

metastasise

verb (intr)
  1. pathol (esp of cancer cells) to spread to a new site in the body via blood or lymph vessels
  2. (of a problem) to deteriorate or spread into new areas
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 metastasise
v.

chiefly British English spelling of metastasize. Related: Metastasised; metastasising.

metastasize

1826, from metastasis + -ize. Related: Metastasized; metastasizing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

metastasise in Medicine

metastasize

[mə-tăstə-sīz′]
v.
  1. To be transmitted or transferred by or as if by metastasis.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.