Slideshows Images Quizzes

Copyright © 2018 by RxList Inc. RxList does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. See additional information.

Definition of Paroxysm

Paroxysm: In medicine, a paroxysm is a violent attack. It may be due to the sudden occurrence of symptoms or the acute exacerbation (the abrupt worsening) of preexisting symptoms.

You may have "a paroxysm of coughing" as opposed, for example, to "a lingering cough."

The word "paroxysm" comes from the Greek "para-," during + "oxys," sharp or acute. The root "oxys" was also used by the founder of modern chemistry Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier (1743-94) to coin the word "oxygen."

SLIDESHOW

Heart Disease: Causes of a Heart Attack See Slideshow
Reviewed on 12/27/2018
CONTINUE SCROLLING FOR RELATED SLIDESHOW

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors