[per-uh-stawl-sis, -stal-]
noun, plural peristalses [per-uh-stawl-seez, -stal-] . Physiology.
the progressive wave of contraction and relaxation of a tubular muscular system, especially the alimentary canal, by which the contents are forced through the system.

1855–60; < Neo-Latin < Greek peri- peri- + stálsis contraction, equivalent to stal- (variant stem of stéllein to set, bring together, compress) + -sis -sis

hyperperistalsis, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
peristalsis (ˌpɛrɪˈstælsɪs)
n , pl -ses
physiol the succession of waves of involuntary muscular contraction of various bodily tubes, esp of the alimentary tract, where it effects transport of food and waste products
[C19: from New Latin, from peri- + Greek stalsis compression, from stellein to press together]

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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

peristalsis per·i·stal·sis (pěr'ĭ-stôl'sĭs, -stāl'-)
n. pl. per·i·stal·ses (-sēz)
The wavelike muscular contractions of the intestine or other tubular structure that propel the contents onward by alternate contraction and relaxation. Also called vermicular movement.

per'i·stal'tic (-stôl'tĭk, -stāl'-) adj.
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Science Dictionary
peristalsis   (pěr'ĭ-stôl'sĭs)  Pronunciation Key 
The wavelike muscular contractions in tubular structures, especially organs of the digestive system such as the esophagus and the intestines. Peristalsis is characterized by alternate contraction and relaxation, which pushes ingested food through the digestive tract towards its release at the anus. Worms propel themselves through peristaltic movement.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary
peristalsis [(per-uh-stawl-sis, per-uh-stal-sis)]

The wavelike, involuntary muscular contractions that move food through the digestive system.

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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