hypertonic hy`per*ton"ic, n. [Pref. hyper- + tonic.] (Physiology, Biochemistry) Having a higher osmotic pressure than a comparison solution; -- of an aqueous solution. Increasing the concentration of dissolved solids increases the osmotic pressure, and thus the tonicity of a solution. Opposite of {hypotonic} and contrasting with {isotonic}. [WordNet sense 1] [PJC]

A knowledge of the colligative properties of solutions . . . is essential for one to understand fully the principles involved in rendering intravenous solutions isotonic with blood serum, or opthalmic solutions isotonic with lachrymal fluid. Solutions thus adjusted produce less shock and much less irritation than those which are hypotonic or hypertonic, and present-day practise recognizes the desirability of making the necessary adjustments whenever possible. --Cook & Martin (Remington's Practice of Pharmacy, Tenth Ed.: Mack Publ., Easton Pa., 1951)

2. Specifically: Having an osmotic pressure greater than that of blood plasma, which is approximately that of a 0.2 normal solution of sodium chloride. Cells taken from a medium of normal physiological osmolality and placed in a hypertonic medium will shrink. [WordNet sense 1] [PJC]

3. in a state of abnormally high tension; -- of muscle. [WordNet sense 2]

Syn: pumped-up. [WordNet 1.5]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • hypertonic — 1855, from HYPER (Cf. hyper ) + TONIC (Cf. tonic). Related: Hypertonia; hypertonicity …   Etymology dictionary

  • hypertonic — [hī΄pər tän′ik] adj. 1. having abnormally high tension or tone, esp. of the muscles 2. having an osmotic pressure higher than that of an isotonic solution …   English World dictionary

  • hypertonic — 1. Having a greater degree of tension. SYN: spastic (1). 2. Having a greater osmotic pressure than a reference solution, which is ordinarily assumed to be blood plasma or interstitial fluid; more specifically, refers to a fluid in which c …   Medical dictionary

  • hypertonic — adjective Etymology: International Scientific Vocabulary Date: 1855 1. exhibiting excessive tone or tension < a hypertonic baby > < a hypertonic bladder > 2. having a higher osmotic pressure than a surrounding medium or a fluid under comparison …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • hypertonic — having an osmotic pressure higher than that of the environment, e.g. a fish in fresh water is hypertonic to its environment (and hence tends to lose salts and be flooded by water). Opposite to hypotonic …   Dictionary of ichthyology

  • hypertonic — Of a fluid, sufficiently concentrated to cause osmotic shrinkage of cells immersed in it. Note that a mildly hyperosmotic solution is not necessarily hypertonic for viable cells, that are capable of regulating their volumes by active transport.… …   Dictionary of molecular biology

  • hypertonic — hypertonicity /huy peuhr toh nis i tee/, n. /huy peuhr ton ik/, adj. 1. Physiol. of or pertaining to hypertonia. 2. Physical Chem. noting a solution of higher osmotic pressure than another solution with which it is compared (opposed to hypotonic) …   Universalium

  • hypertonic — adjective a) having a greater osmotic pressure than another b) having a very high muscular tension; spastic Ant: hypotonic …   Wiktionary

  • hypertonic — adj. having excessive muscular tone or tension …   English contemporary dictionary

  • hypertonic — [ˌhʌɪpə tɒnɪk] adjective 1》 Biology having a higher osmotic pressure than a particular fluid. 2》 Physiology of or in a state of abnormally high muscle tone. Derivatives hypertonia noun hypertonicity noun …   English new terms dictionary

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