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Pronunciation: par'ok-sizm


  1. A sharp spasm or convulsion.
  2. A sudden onset of a symptom or disease, especially one with recurrent manifestations such as the chills and rigor of malaria.

[G. paroxysmos, fr. paroxyno, to sharpen, irritate, fr. oxys, sharp]

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© Copyright 2018 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review date: Sep 19, 2016.