AskDefine | Define ankylosis

Dictionary Definition

ankylosis n : abnormal adhesion and rigidity of the bones of a joint [syn: anchylosis]

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. the growing together of bones to form a single unit
  2. the stiffening of a joint as the result of such abnormal fusion

Extensive Definition

Ankylosis, or Anchylosis (from Greek αγκυλος, bent, crooked) is a stiffness of a joint, the result of injury or disease. The rigidity may be complete or partial and may be due to inflammation of the tendinous or muscular structures outside the joint or of the tissues of the joint itself. When the structures outside the joint are affected, the term "false" ankylosis has been used in contradistinction to "true" ankylosis, in which the disease is within the joint. When inflammation has caused the joint-ends of the bones to be fused together the ankylosis is termed osseous or complete. Excision of a completely ankylosed shoulder or elbow may restore free mobility and usefulness to the limb. "Ankylosis" is also used as an anatomical term, bones being said to ankylose (or anchylose) when, from being originally distinct, they coalesce, or become so joined together that no motion can take place between them.

See also


ankylosis in German: Ankylose
ankylosis in Spanish: Anquilosis
ankylosis in French: Ankylose
ankylosis in Croatian: Ankiloza
ankylosis in Dutch: Ankylose (geneeskunde)
ankylosis in Japanese: 強直
ankylosis in Polish: Ankyloza
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