Definition of wheeze in English:

wheeze

verb

[NO OBJECT]
  • 1Breathe with a whistling or rattling sound in the chest, as a result of obstruction in the air passages.

    ‘the illness often leaves her wheezing’
    ‘his wheezing old father’
    • ‘Does your chest wheeze or make whistling sounds even when you do not have a cold?’
    • ‘The elder man spoke in a weak, plaintive tone, constantly stopping to wheeze and gasp for breath.’
    • ‘He was still coughing and wheezing, trying to stay quiet.’
    • ‘It may be that high levels of cat allergen induce tolerance, which protects against wheeze in very young children, but provoke symptoms in older children predisposed to wheeze for various reasons.’
    • ‘Vincent lifted the pillow as Jack coughed and wheezed.’
    • ‘There's sneezing, hacking, coughing, wheezing and aching, not to mention a constant runny nose and watery eyes.’
    • ‘I could see she was wheezing and struggling to breathe.’
    • ‘I checked online and found that metoprolol has a warning to contact the doctor immediately if you experience wheezing, shortness of breath or swelling of hands and feet.’
    • ‘Radical as ever, Brinkmann listens to the rasping of his lungs, from which his voice rises, wheezes, belches, whispers and shouts.’
    • ‘Inside, the group browsed, coughed, hacked, wheezed, and spluttered.’
    • ‘The older man was beginning to wheeze as he breathed.’
    • ‘In a statement released this week, Schering-Plough said Asmanex improved lung function as well as day and nighttime symptoms such as coughing and wheezing and decreased the need for rescue medication.’
    • ‘Abruptly the old man wheezed and slumped back in his chair, one stiff, gnarled hand to his chest.’
    • ‘The old man wheezed and gasped terribly, groaning out a little as the pain of his performance finally caught up with him.’
    • ‘‘That's enough for today,’ Bolts wheezed as Katie entered with a super happy look on her face.’
    • ‘There can be sudden choking with acute respiratory distress, or there can be delayed symptoms with cough, wheezing, and hemoptysis.’
    • ‘The old man eyed me suspiciously and limped forward as he wheezed and gasped for breath.’
    • ‘Liz smiles professionally and holds Larry, who wheezes and splutters, enduring his hardship with a stoicism that looks exhausting.’
    • ‘Every time the refrigerator cycled on, I'd be coughing and wheezing.’
    • ‘EIA's symptoms include wheezing, coughing, prolonged expiration, rapid heart rate and tightness of the chest.’
    breathe audibly, breathe noisily, gasp, whistle, hiss, rasp, croak, pant, cough
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1with object Say (something) with a wheezing sound.
      ‘he could barely wheeze out his pleas for a handout’
      with direct speech ‘‘Don't worry son,’ he wheezed’
      • ‘Uriah wheezes a laugh and swaggers back to the picnic table for more wine and cheese.’
    2. 1.2no object, with adverbial of direction Walk or move slowly making a wheezing sound.
      ‘she wheezed up the hill towards them’
      • ‘He moved lazily towards me, his voice was wheezing.’
      • ‘If you climb simulated hills on a stationary bike, you can wheeze up real ones on a mountain bike.’
      • ‘Patients with severe asthma may not have any wheezing as there is very little air moving in and out of the lungs.’
      • ‘‘Thank you, everyone,’ Nick wheezed as the shuttle moved on, re-entering Earth's ozone.’
      • ‘So I persisted, wheezing and tripping up and down the steep hills.’
      • ‘Dreyr collapsed into a heap on the floor and wheezed as the figure walked away, its cloak billowing in the breeze and giving the illusion that the figure was much larger and more formidable.’
      • ‘He glanced back at Vincent, who was puffing and wheezing from the walk down the tunnel under the burden of ammunition, weapons and the oppressive heat of his coat.’
      • ‘Cami did not look at her as Alyssa wheezed to a walk next to her.’
      • ‘Over the next few days I wheezed and huffed and puffed my way slowly along the mountain paths.’
    3. 1.3 (of a device) make an irregular rattling or spluttering sound.
      ‘the engine coughed, wheezed, and shrieked into life’
      • ‘Quickly I entered my car and started the engine, which coughed and wheezed into life.’
      • ‘The massive machine wheezed and spewed diesel smoke as it pushed an enormous heap of concrete debris, olive trees, and metal sheeting into a larger pile at the roadside.’
      • ‘A loud rip vibrated, slowly wheezing out and even grossed me out as I tried not to gag.’
      • ‘The reactor sat on a table with an attached vacuum pump wheezing away.’
      • ‘The brakes wheeze and the windows shudder, the seats are cracked and creaky.’
      • ‘It coughed and wheezed to a stop beside the pumps, and I dutifully walked out to serve the tired and dishevelled middle-aged woman sitting behind the wheel.’
      • ‘On a hot afternoon, a Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation bus approaches a bus stop in JP Nagar and wheezes to a halt a few metres away.’
      • ‘Outside, the church bus rumbled to a stop, air brakes wheezing.’
      • ‘Then we sat and chatted as the little thermal printer attached to the spiro-whatsit machine wheezed out its report.’
      • ‘The boat's engine had coughed and wheezed for a good ten minutes before Kami had been able to coax it into working order.’
      • ‘The machine had been wheezing and spluttering for a while now as I subjected it to my punishing regime of no less than five windows open at any one time and finally it gave up the ghost.’

noun

  • 1A wheezing sound.

    ‘I talk with a wheeze’
    ‘there wasn't the faintest wheeze from the starter motor’
    • ‘There is not a sound, apart from the faint wheeze of someone playing a harmonica.’
    • ‘He always popped his handkerchief once, wiped his brow, and then emitted a loud wheeze - like the releasing of steam from a locomotive.’
    • ‘The barn owl's call is distinguished by a screech that has shades of a wheeze.’
    • ‘Research has found that babies and children exposed regularly to smoky atmospheres are twice as likely to have asthma attacks or chest infections, are more likely to get coughs, colds and wheezes and are off school sick more often.’
    • ‘The youngster had breathing problems and was given an oxygen mask, inhalers and steroid tablets after contracting a viral-induced wheeze last summer.’
    • ‘On six tunes, the wheeze of a button accordian added a dimension that bluegrass purists had never heard before; unfortunately, the band doesn't presently have an accordion player.’
    • ‘After counting nine blades the mixture control was set to auto-rich and the Pratt &. Whitney radial sprang into life after a few coughs, a wheeze, and a puff of exhaust smoke.’
    • ‘A valet whisks a car away for arriving patrons, while down at the corner, a Metro bus wheezes and clanks to a stop.’
    • ‘Nocturnal wheeze and cough are considered to be common features of asthma.’
    • ‘He had no other symptoms, and the examination didn't yield a clue - no rubs, rales, wheezes, or murmur.’
    • ‘He listens to the oxygen machines hum and burble and gasp, the humidifier wheeze, the buzz of the fluorescent light in the hall.’
    • ‘The air, however, holds the suspended product of untold sneezes, coughs and wheezes, many of them, we must remember in the time of SARS, from Chinese Canadians.’
    • ‘The shadow emitted a terrible sound, an awful wheeze of frenzied laughter suppressed until it became strangling.’
    • ‘Another sign is a cough or a wheeze or breathing problems, sinusitis or other nasal problems.’
    • ‘The track blossoms into a wonderful cacophony of bells, whistles, and wheezes.’
    • ‘Still have a bit of a chesty wheeze and cough too, but, hopefully it will all be cleared in the next day or two.’
    • ‘At night when I'm lying in my bed, my wheezes echo throughout my apartment.’
    • ‘The man, in a veined body stocking, is a helpless victim, thrashing, lolling and collapsing like a mad puppet on twisted strings, to musical pings and wheezes.’
    • ‘I dare to ask; my throat is sore, and my voice sounds like a nasal wheeze.’
    • ‘These symptoms last a day or 2 and are followed by worsening of the cough and the appearance of wheezes (high-pitched whistling noises when breathing out).’
    constricted breathing, gasp, whistle, hiss, rasp, croak, pant, cough
    View synonyms
  • 2British informal A clever or amusing scheme, idea, or trick.

    ‘a new wheeze to help farmers’
    • ‘This clever wheeze encapsulated both the best of Brown and the worst: it commanded the moral and political high ground in being seen to clamp down on non-declaration of income.’
    • ‘This could have been one of those rare wheezes which combines a desirable outcome with populist appeal.’
    • ‘This illiberal wheeze is the idea of Home Office minister.’
    • ‘The Dundee midfielder was performing a series of wheezes for the photographer, involving hanging from goalposts and catching a ball one-handed, when I found out he had been chosen.’
    • ‘It's not about a clash of ideals - or God forbid - ideologies; it's becoming a contest to see who can connive to sucker in the largest number of voters with the most eye-catching wheezes.’
    • ‘What it can do is facilitate you - and me - to employ Naresh and others like him by thinking up various wheezes which guarantee employment.’
    • ‘But the progress we have made, the progress that we will continue to make doesn't come from grand rhetoric, it doesn't come from clever-sounding wheezes.’
    • ‘No bank worker in their right mind would go to their boss in most Irish banks and blow the whistle on one of the bank's wheezes for making more money that they are entitled to.’
    • ‘This was no time to be helping the Guardian fill its pages with droll wheezes.’
    • ‘Policy wonks might have thought it a clever wheeze to apply New York Mayor Giuliani's zero tolerance on street crime to cannabis users.’
    • ‘Our concern is that this is all a wheeze not to pay rent for the foreseeable future to the detriment of the pension fund.’
    • ‘Stalking customers after they signal their intentions unambiguously is a wheeze to hold on to someone who has taken a lot of trouble to break free.’
    • ‘Who knows what daft wheezes they would contrive.’
    • ‘Although not an ideas person, she's got one or two new wheezes.’
    • ‘This is not just a clever publicity wheeze, it is also communicating a set of very complex and powerful points.’
    • ‘Elsewhere, as you'll have noticed, tactical buttons were the wheeze of the week.’
    • ‘Some of these cunning wheezes succeed, and some of them don't.’
    • ‘He had always been an enthusiast for technological wheezes, from a doomed scheme for the underground gasification of coal to a death-ray which killed rats.’
    • ‘The opposition seems to have embarked on a fruitless strategy to force the organisation to be less, how shall we put it, opaque in his parliamentary contributions and other wheezes.’
    • ‘And he has exhausted all of the possible clever taxation wheezes.’
    scheme, plan, idea, tactic, move, stratagem, ploy, gambit, device, manoeuvre, contrivance, expedient
    View synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English: probably from Old Norse hvæsa ‘to hiss’.

Pronunciation

wheeze

/wiːz/