Skip to Content

detergent

Pronunciation: de-ter'jent

Definition:

  1. Cleansing.
  2. A cleansing or purging agent, usually salts of long-chain aliphatic bases or acids (quaternary ammonium or sulfonic acid compounds) that, through a surface action that depends on their possessing both hydrophilic and hydrophobic properties, exert cleansing (oil-dissolving) and antibacterial effects; acridine derivatives (acriflavine, proflavine) as well as other dyes (brilliant green, crystal violet) have detergent properties for the same reasons.

Synonym(s): detersive

[L. de-tergeo, pp. -tersus, to wipe off]

Disclaimer: This site is designed to offer information for general educational purposes only. The health information furnished on this site and the interactive responses are not intended to be professional advice and are not intended to replace personal consultation with a qualified physician, pharmacist, or other healthcare professional. You must always seek the advice of a professional for questions related to a disease, disease symptoms, and appropriate therapeutic treatments.
© Copyright 2017 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review Date: Sep 19, 2016.
Hide