contortion of the body caused by violent, involuntary muscular contractions of the extremities, trunk, and head.
violent agitation or disturbance; commotion.
an outburst of great, uncontrollable laughter.

1575–85; < Latin convulsiōn- (stem of convulsiō). See convulse, -ion Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
convulsion (kənˈvʌlʃən)
1.  a violent involuntary contraction of a muscle or muscles
2.  a violent upheaval, disturbance, or agitation, esp a social one
3.  informal (usually plural) uncontrollable laughter: I was in convulsions

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1585, from L. convulsionem, from pp. stem of convellere "to tear loose," from com- "together" + vellere "to pluck, pull violently."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

convulsion con·vul·sion (kən-vŭl'shən)
An intense, paroxysmal, involuntary muscular contraction.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

convulsion definition

A severe, often violent involuntary contraction of the muscles. Convulsions may be caused by high fevers or poisoning and often accompany such diseases such as epilepsy.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
Fortunately, she was in a clinic, where the doctor guessed immediately that she
  was in the grip of malarial convulsions.
The sedative medications ward off convulsions and brain damage.
Foreign donors sometimes bring food and tablets to treat convulsions.
It attacks the brain, causing agitation, terror and convulsions.
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