a stiletto or dagger.
any similar sharp-pointed instrument.
  1. a probe.
  2. a wire run through the length of a catheter, cannula, or needle to make it rigid or to clear it.

Nearby words

  1. style,
  2. style sheet,
  3. stylebook,
  4. stylee,
  5. styler,
  6. styli,
  7. styli-,
  8. stylie,
  9. styliform,
  10. styling

Origin of stylet

1690–1700; < French < Middle French stilet < Italian stiletto stiletto; -y- < Latin stylus. See style, stylus Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for stylet

British Dictionary definitions for stylet



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

Word Origin for stylet

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

Medicine definitions for stylet


[stī-lĕt, stīlĭt]


A fine wire that is run through a catheter, cannula, or hollow needle to keep it stiff or clear of debris.
A slender surgical probe.stylus

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