verb (used with object)
to overstrain or wrench (the ligaments of an ankle, wrist, or other joint) so as to injure without fracture or dislocation.
a violent straining or wrenching of the parts around a joint, without dislocation.
the condition of being sprained.
Origin of sprain
First recorded in 1595–1605; origin uncertainRelated formsun·sprained, adjective
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Examples from the Web for sprain
Historical Examples of sprain
I cried, as I pressed her to my breast, "it is nothing; only a sprain."
The injury to Justin's hand proved to be one of strain and sprain.
If I trained for a race, I was sure to sprain my ankle on the day when I was to run.
They watched him with some curiosity as he treated the sprain and studied the pulse.
It couldn't even have been a sprain, judging by the way he was standing there.
British Dictionary definitions for sprain
(tr) to injure (a joint) by a sudden twisting or wrenching of its ligaments
the resulting injury to such a joint, characterized by swelling and temporary disability
Word Origin for sprain
C17: of uncertain 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 sprain
c.1600, of uncertain origin. The verb is attested from 1620s. A connection has been suggested to Middle French espraindre "to press out," from Latin exprimere, but the sense evolution is difficult.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
An injury to a ligament when the joint is carried through a range of motion greater than its normal range without dislocation or fracture.
To cause a sprain to a joint or ligament.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.