[ ral, rahl ]
/ ræl, rɑl /

noun Pathology.

an abnormal crackling or rattling sound heard upon auscultation of the chest, caused by disease or congestion of the lungs.

Nearby words

  1. raking piece,
  2. rakish,
  3. rakishly,
  4. raku,
  5. rakʿa,
  6. raleigh,
  7. raleigh, sir walter,
  8. ralik chain,
  9. rall.,
  10. rallentando

Origin of rale

1820–30; < French râle, derivative of râler to make a rattling sound in the throat; cf. rail3

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

British Dictionary definitions for rales



/ (rɑːl) /


med an abnormal coarse crackling sound heard on auscultation of the chest, usually caused by the accumulation of fluid in the lungs

Word Origin for rale

C19: from French râle, from râler to breathe with a rattling sound; compare rail ³

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

Medicine definitions for rales



An abnormal or pathological respiratory sound heard on auscultation.

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