Skip to Content


Pronunciation: ri-jid'i-te


  1. Stiffness or inflexibility.
  2. In psychiatry and clinical psychology, an aspect of personality characterized by a person's resistance to change.
  3. In neurology, one type of increase in muscle tone at rest; characterized by increased resistance to passive stretch, independent of velocity and symmetric about joints; increases with activation of corresponding muscles in the contralateral limb. Two basic types are cogwheel rigidity and lead-pipe rigidity.

Synonym(s): rigor1

[L. rigidus, rigid, inflexible]

See Also: nuchal rigidity

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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