• synonyms


See more synonyms for stylet on Thesaurus.com
  1. a stiletto or dagger.
  2. any similar sharp-pointed instrument.
  3. Medicine/Medical.
    1. a probe.
    2. a wire run through the length of a catheter, cannula, or needle to make it rigid or to clear it.
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Origin of stylet

1690–1700; < French < Middle French stilet < Italian stiletto stiletto; -y- < Latin stylus. See style, stylus
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for stylet

Historical Examples

  • Stylet: a small style or stiff process: one of the piercing mouth structures in Diptera and Hemiptera.

    Explanation of Terms Used in Entomology

    John. B. Smith

  • Leaves alternate, pinnate with stylet in place of the odd leaflet.

  • Leaves abruptly pinnate, the place of the odd leaflet taken by a stylet.

  • Leaves opposite, abruptly pinnate with a stylet in place of the odd leaflet.

  • The question being asked, 'How can the stylet be procured to satisfy curiosity?'

British Dictionary definitions for stylet


  1. surgery
    1. a wire for insertion into a flexible cannula or catheter to maintain its rigidity or patency during passage
    2. a slender probe
  2. zoology any small pointed bristle-like part
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Word Origin

C17: from French stilet, from Old Italian stiletto; influenced in spelling by Latin stylus style
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

stylet in Medicine


(stī-lĕt, stīlĭt)
  1. A fine wire that is run through a catheter, cannula, or hollow needle to keep it stiff or clear of debris.
  2. A slender surgical probe.stylus
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.