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[puhs-choo l] /ˈpʌs tʃʊl/
Pathology. a small elevation of the skin containing pus.
any pimplelike or blisterlike swelling or elevation.
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin pūstula, pūsula a pimple, blister; akin to Greek phȳsaléos inflated
Related forms
pustuled, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for pustules
  • The pathogen makes its presence known to humans through crimson pustules on the plant's stems and leaves.
  • When those pustules burst, millions of spores flare out in search of fresh hosts.
  • Secondary yeast infection is common, resulting in red color and surrounding red bumps or pustules.
  • pustules form on the underside of the leaf, beneath the small spots.
  • The lesions start as macules then progress to papules then to vesicles and finally to pustules.
British Dictionary definitions for pustules


a small inflamed elevated area of skin containing pus
any small distinct spot resembling a pimple or blister
Derived Forms
pustular (ˈpʌstjʊlə) adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Latin pustula a blister, variant of pūsula; compare Greek phusallis bladder, phusa bellows
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 pustules



late 14c., from Old French pustule (13c.) and directly from Latin pustula "blister, pimple," from PIE imitative root *pu- (1) "blow, swell," on notion of "inflated area" (cf. Sanskrit pupphusah "lung," Greek physa "breath, blast, wind, bubble," Lithuanian puciu "to blow, swell," Old Church Slavonic puchati "to blow"). Cf. emphysema. Related: Pustulant; pustular.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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pustules in Medicine

pustule pus·tule (pŭs'chōōl, pŭs'tyōōl)

  1. A small inflamed skin swelling that is filled with pus; a pimple.

  2. A small swelling similar to a blister or pimple.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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pustules in Science
A small inflamed swelling of the skin that is filled with pus.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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