A ring-shaped muscle that relaxes or tightens to open or close a passage or opening in the body. Examples are the anal sphincter (around the opening of the anus) and the pyloric sphincter (at the lower opening of the stomach).

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  • sphincter — [ sfɛ̃ktɛr ] n. m. • 1548; mot lat. d o. gr. ♦ Muscle annulaire disposé autour d un orifice naturel qu il resserre et ferme en se contractant. Sphincter de l anus; sphincter anal, vaginal. ● sphincter nom masculin (bas latin sphincter, du grec… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Sphincter — Sphinc ter, a. (Anat.) Of, pertaining to, or designating, a sphincter; as, a sphincter muscle. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • sphincter — 1570s, from M.Fr. sphincter, from L.L. sphincter contractile muscle, from Gk. sphinkter band, anything that binds tight, from sphingein to squeeze, bind, of unknown origin. First used in anatomical sense by Galen …   Etymology dictionary

  • Sphincter — Sphinc ter, n. [NL., fr. ??? to bind tight.] (Anat.) A muscle which surrounds, and by its contraction tends to close, a natural opening; as, the sphincter of the bladder. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Sphincter — (gr.), der Schließmuskel, s.d …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • sphincter — ► NOUN Anatomy ▪ a ring of muscle surrounding and serving to guard or close an opening such as the anus. ORIGIN Greek sphinkt r, from sphingein bind tight …   English terms dictionary

  • sphincter — [sfiŋk′tər] n. [LL < Gr sphinktēr < sphingein, to draw close < IE * spheig < base * spēi , to flourish, grow thick > SPEED, SPARE] Anat. a ring shaped muscle that surrounds a natural opening in the body and can open or close it by… …   English World dictionary

  • Sphincter — A sphincter is an anatomical structure, or a circular muscle, that normally maintains constriction of a natural body passage or orifice and which relaxes as required by normal physiological functioning. Sphincters are found in many animals; there …   Wikipedia

  • sphincter — A muscle that encircles a duct, tube, or orifice in such a way that its contraction constricts the lumen or orifice. SYN: musculus s. [TA], s. muscle [TA]. [G. sphinkter, a band or lace] s. of ampulla s. of hepatopancreatic ampulla. anatomic s.… …   Medical dictionary

  • Sphincter — Als Schließmuskel bezeichnet man in der Biologie einen Muskel, der ein Gehäuse o.ä. verschließt. So zieht der Schließmuskel der Muscheln die beiden Schalenhälften zusammen. In der Anatomie der Wirbeltiere ist ein Schließmuskel (griech. Sphinkter) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Sphincter — Un sphincter est un muscle circulaire situé autour d’un conduit naturel (tube digestif, vessie, etc.). Sa contraction permet de fermer totalement ou partiellement un orifice ou un conduit du corps. Sa commande peut être volontaire ou automatique… …   Wikipédia en Français

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