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[hahy-druh-sef-uh-luh s] /ˌhaɪ drəˈsɛf ə ləs/
noun, Pathology
an accumulation of serous fluid within the cranium, especially in infancy, due to obstruction of the movement of cerebrospinal fluid, often causing great enlargement of the head; water on the brain.
Also, hydrocephaly
[hahy-druh-sef-uh-lee] /ˌhaɪ drəˈsɛf ə li/ (Show IPA)
Origin of hydrocephalus
1660-70; < Late Latin hydrocephalus (morbus) water-headed (sickness), translation of Greek tò hydroképhalon (páthos). See hydro-1, -cephalous Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for hydrocephalus
  • When another sonogram was taken a short time later, it showed absolutely no evidence whatsoever of hydrocephalus.
  • Children who also have hydrocephalus may need a ventricular peritoneal shunt placed.
  • One common problem related to brain bleeding is hydrocephalus, which is the build up of fluid within the brain.
  • The fluid that collects as a reaction to the initial injury can cause hydrocephalus.
British Dictionary definitions for hydrocephalus


accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid within the ventricles of the brain because its normal outlet has been blocked by congenital malformation or disease. In infancy it usually results in great enlargement of the head Nontechnical name water on the brain
Derived Forms
hydrocephalic (ˌhaɪdrəʊsɛˈfælɪk), hydrocephaloid, hydrocephalous, adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for hydrocephalus

1660s, medical Latin, from Greek hydro- "water" (see water (n.1)) + kephale "head" (see cephalo-). Related: Hydrocephalic; hydrocephalous.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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hydrocephalus in Medicine

hydrocephalus hy·dro·ceph·a·lus (hī'drō-sěf'ə-ləs) or hy·dro·ceph·a·ly (-lē)
A usually congenital condition in which an abnormal accumulation of fluid in the cerebral ventricles causes enlargement of the skull and compression of the brain, destroying much of the neural tissue.

hy'dro·ce·phal'ic (-sə-fāl'ĭk) or hy'dro·ceph'a·loid' adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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hydrocephalus in Science
hydrocephalus (hī'drō-sěf'ə-ləs) also hydrocephaly
A usually congenital condition in which an abnormal accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid in the cerebral ventricles causes enlargement of the skull and compression of and injury to brain tissue. If hydrocephalus becomes progressive, a shunt is surgically placed to reduce pressure by conducting fluid away from the brain, usually to the peritoneum.

hydrocephalic adjective (hī'drō-sə-fāl'ĭk)
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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