Definition of excrescence in US English:



  • 1A distinct outgrowth on a human or animal body or on a plant, especially one that is the result of disease or abnormality.

    • ‘The appearance and consistency of the cyst lining ranged from smooth and glistening to soft, necrotic, red-gray papillary excrescences.’
    • ‘These families are characterized by dermal spicules that have distal excrescences or extra tangential rays, in the former, and with swollen distal rays on dermalia in the latter.’
    • ‘The Chinese have a tradition of breaking open the seed of brucea javonica and taping directly over warts and excrescences to stimulate their dissolution.’
    • ‘When the female insect has mated, it settles on the cactus and becomes permanently fixed there, sheds all its limbs and swells into a round lump which looks more like an excrescence on the cactus than an insect.’
    • ‘Other examples of topical application of herbs and their expressed juice are the use of chelidonium or dandelion latex to remove warts and other excrescences.’
    • ‘On section, it was unilocular and lined by a dark pink-gray, friable material with yellow papillary excrescences.’
    • ‘The cyst was opened to reveal a chocolate-like material with no nodules or excrescences on either the inner or outer surface.’
    • ‘Appears as a cystic excrescence projecting away from the metaphysis that has its axis pointing away from the joint.’
    • ‘Further examination revealed a brownish-yellow excrescence made up of dense hyperkeratotic tissue with longitudinal ridges on an erythematous base.’
    • ‘When breeding, some Scutiger males exude nuptial excrescences on their venters.’
    • ‘Moreover, from early accounts, it is often difficult to distinguish true large bony outgrowths from scalp excrescences.’
    • ‘All dendrites bear large numbers of spines, small excrescences on which incoming nerve fibres terminate to form synapses.’
    • ‘Surface ulceration was also present focally in the tumor with the multifocal papillary excrescences.’
    • ‘Concurrent with these changes is the formation of marginal osteophytes that are excrescences of bone arising at the margins of the joint.’
    • ‘On X ray there are joint margin excrescences called osteophytes (literally bony growths).’
    • ‘Multiple additional lymphatic-type excrescences became evident in the perineal and perianal area with some progression of the cutaneous changes in the pubic area.’
    • ‘The polypoid areas containing dilated spaces in upper dermis mimicked lymphatic-type excrescences and were misinterpreted as lymphatic malformation in MRI and during surgery.’
    • ‘The majority of their patients presented with painful ulcers; however, verrucous excrescences were also clinical presentations of oropharyngeal and laryngeal histoplasmosis.’
    growth, lump, swelling, protuberance, protrusion, knob, nodule, outgrowth
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    1. 1.1 An unattractive or superfluous addition or feature.
      ‘removing the excrescences of later interpretation’
      • ‘Going further, fiction that celebrates darkness and destruction without the redemption of new insight is at best a useless excrescence and at worst a kind of dangerous pollution.’
      • ‘Are those secret-admirer e-mails real - or just the latest excrescence of an Internet marketing machine grown unfathomably sleazy?’
      • ‘All the hideous excrescences that have overgrown our modern life, the pomps and conventions and dreary solemnities, dread nothing so much as the flash of laughter which, like lightning, shrivels them up and leaves the bones bare.’
      • ‘The tiles break apart to reveal red, raw meatlike excrescences that threaten to overwhelm the entire image.’
      • ‘Another sculpture features dozens of pointed excrescences that jut up from a round base.’
      • ‘I have yet to meet a single one who isn't sickened to his stomach by the excrescence of his pardons, and by the puerile vandalism of the White House in the last hours of the old regime.’
      • ‘We take the view that it is appropriate that it go before a select committee so that consideration can be given to dealing with the excrescences in the drafting, and to aiding the commission to do what is, clearly, critical work.’
      • ‘Irregularities have to be handled as natural aspects of a language, not as excrescences which needlessly complicate the grammar.’
      • ‘Some of the worst, and I would say probably the excrescence, in this legislation are the transitional provisions in Part 3.’
      eyesore, blot on the landscape, monstrosity, disfigurement
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Late Middle English: from Latin excrescentia, from excrescere ‘grow out’, from ex- ‘out’ + crescere ‘grow’.