[too-mes-uh nt, tyoo-]


swelling; slightly tumid.
exhibiting or affected with many ideas or emotions; teeming.
pompous and pretentious, especially in the use of language; bombastic.

Origin of tumescent

1880–85; < Latin tumēscent- (stem of tumēscēns, present participle of tumēscere to begin to swell), equivalent to tum(ēre) to swell + -ēscent- -escent
Related formstu·mes·cence, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for tumescence

Historical Examples of tumescence

British Dictionary definitions for tumescence



swollen or becoming swollen
Derived Formstumescence, noun

Word Origin for tumescent

C19: from Latin tumescere to begin to swell, from tumēre
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 tumescence

1725, from French tumescence, from Latin tumescentem (nominative tumescens) "swelling," present participle of tumescere "begin to swell," from tumere "to swell" (see thigh) + inchoative suffix -escere. The earliest attested form of the word in English is tumefaction (1590s).



1806, from Latin tumescentem, present participle of tumescere "to begin to swell," inceptive of tumere "to swell" (see thigh).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

tumescence in Medicine




A swelling or an enlargement.
A swollen condition.
A swollen part or organ.




Somewhat tumid.
Becoming swollen; swelling.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.