Definition of lymphatic in English:



  • 1Physiology
    Relating to lymph or its secretion.

    ‘lymphatic vessels’
    ‘lymphatic drainage’
    • ‘These therapies involve turning patients at various angles to improve gas exchange, mobilization of secretions, and lymphatic drainage.’
    • ‘Lymph nodes also contain efferent lymphatic vessels, which lack Factor VIII staining.’
    • ‘Manual drainage opens nonfunctioning lymphatic and venous connections and directs lymph through collateral vessels to adjacent normal lymphatics.’
    • ‘You've got arterial venous vessels and the lymphatic vessels return fluid and debris and cells from the interstitial fluid around the vessels, back to the venous circulation.’
    • ‘Lymphatic watersheds represent divisions between lymphatic drainage regions that drain in opposite directions.’
  • 2archaic (of a person) pale, flabby, or sluggish.

    • ‘He was of that soft, lymphatic temperament which it is almost impossible to keep within a moderate compass, particularly as in his case his lameness prevented his taking exercise.’
    • ‘He was a lymphatic, half-witted Hindu youth, who lived his life in almost complete silence, because he spoke some Manipur dialect which nobody else understood, not even his Zerbadi wife.’
    sluggish, lethargic, enervated, unenergetic, listless, languid, torpid, inactive, inert, slow, slow-moving, sleepy, somnolent, drowsy, weary, tired, fatigued, heavy, apathetic
    View synonyms


  • A vein-like vessel conveying lymph in the body.

    ‘the fluid is drained by the lymphatics and returned to the circulation’
    • ‘All resection margins, blood vessels, lymphatics, and regional lymph nodes were free of tumor.’
    • ‘The lymphatic system is a network of very fine vessels or tubes called lymphatics that drain lymph from all over the body.’
    • ‘Invasion of neoplastic cells into blood vessels or lymphatics was present in all cases.’
    • ‘In addition, cancers can metastasize by penetrating into blood vessels, lymphatics, and body cavities.’
    • ‘These cells were found minimally invading the liver, by direct extension, but were readily found within the lumina of blood vessels and lymphatics.’


Mid 17th century (in the sense ‘frenzied, mad’): from Latin lymphaticus ‘mad’, from Greek numpholēptos ‘seized by nymphs’; now associated with lymph, on the pattern of words such as spermatic.