[ pi-tee-kee-uh, -tek-ee-uh ]
/ pɪˈti ki ə, -ˈtɛk i ə /

noun, plural pe·te·chi·ae [pi-tee-kee-ee, -tek-ee-ee] /pɪˈti kiˌi, -ˈtɛk iˌi/. Pathology.

a minute, round, nonraised hemorrhage in the skin or in a mucous or serous membrane.

Origin of petechia

1575–85; < New Latin < Italian petecchia (in plural) rash, spots on skin < Vulgar Latin *(im)petīcula, equivalent to Latin impetīc-, stem of impetīx, variant of impetīgō impetigo + -ula -ule Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for petechia


/ (pɪˈtiːkɪə) /

noun plural -chiae (-kɪˌiː)

a minute discoloured spot on the surface of the skin or mucous membrane, caused by an underlying ruptured blood vessel
Derived Formspetechial, adjective

Word Origin for petechia

C18: via New Latin from Italian petecchia freckle, of obscure origin
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 petechia



plural petechiae, "small crimson or purple spots on skin," c.1795 (from 1580s in English texts as an Italian word), Modern Latin, from Italian petecchia "specks or freckles on the face," in plural form petecchie "measles," of unknown origin. Related: Petechial.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for petechia


[ pə-tēkē-ə ]

n. pl. pe•te•chi•ae (-kē-ī′)

A small purplish spot on a body surface, such as the skin or a mucous membrane, caused by a minute hemorrhage and often seen in typhus.
Related formspe•techi•al adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.