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Definition of "lockjaw" []

  • See tetanus. (noun)
  • An early sign of tetanus, in which the jaw is locked closed because of a tonic spasm of the muscles of mastication. Also called trismus. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "lockjaw" in a sentence
  • "Gangrene, as a consequence of contusions or of hemorrhage or of an impediment to the circulation, caused by unskillfully applied apparatus, must not be overlooked among the occasional incidents; nor must lockjaw, which is not an uncommon occurrence."
  • "According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, tetanus, also known as lockjaw disease, can cause painful tightening of muscles in the body, and can lead to death in one out of 10 cases."
  • "Tetanus: Also known as lockjaw; causes painful muscle spasms, breathing failure, death"