[ per-i-tn-ee-uhm ]
/ ˌpɛr ɪ tnˈi əm /

noun, plural per·i·to·ne·ums, per·i·to·ne·a [per-i-tn-ee-uh]. /ˌpɛr ɪ tnˈi ə/. Anatomy.

the serous membrane lining the abdominal cavity and investing its viscera.



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Origin of peritoneum

1535–45; <Late Latin, variant spelling of peritonaeum<Greek peritónaion, noun use of neuter of peritónaios, synonymous derivative of perítonos stretched round. See peri-, tone, -eous

OTHER WORDS FROM peritoneum Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for peritoneum

British Dictionary definitions for peritoneum

/ (ˌpɛrɪtəˈniːəm) /

noun plural -nea (-ˈniːə) or -neums

a thin translucent serous sac that lines the walls of the abdominal cavity and covers most of the viscera

Derived forms of peritoneum

peritoneal, adjective

Word Origin for peritoneum

C16: via Late Latin from Greek peritonaion, from peritonos stretched around, from peri- + tenein to stretch
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

Medical definitions for peritoneum


n. pl. per•i•to•ne•a

The serous sac consisting of mesothelium and a thin layer of irregular connective tissue that lines the abdominal cavity, covers most of the viscera contained therein, and itself forms two cavities, the peritoneal and the omental bursa, which are connected by the epiploic foramen.

Other words from peritoneum

per′i•to•neal adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for peritoneum

[ pĕr′ĭ-tn-ēəm ]

Plural peritonea

The membrane that lines the walls of the abdomen and the pelvis (called the parietal peritoneum) and encloses the abdominal and pelvic organs (called the visceral peritoneum.) The space between the two, the peritoneal cavity, fills with inflammatory cells and pus when the peritoneum becomes infected.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.