AskDefine | Define boil

Dictionary Definition

boil

Noun

1 a painful sore with a hard pus-filled core [syn: furuncle]
2 the temperature at which a liquid boils at sea level; "the brought to water to a boil" [syn: boiling point]

Verb

1 come to the boiling point and change from a liquid to vapor; "Water boils at 100 degrees Celsius" [ant: freeze]
2 cook in boiling liquid; "boil potatoes"
3 bring to, or maintain at, the boiling point; "boil this liquid until it evaporates"
4 be agitated; "the sea was churning in the storm" [syn: churn, moil, roil]
5 be in an agitated emotional state; "The customer was seething with anger" [syn: seethe]

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Pronunciation

Etymology 1

bile.

Noun

  1. A localized accumulation of pus in the skin, resulting from infection.
  2. The point at which fluid begins to change to a vapour.
    Add the noodles when the water comes to the boil.
  3. The collective noun for a group of hawks.
Translations
accumulation of pus
The point at which fluid begins to change to a vapour

Etymology 2

From boillir (French: bouillir), from bullire

Verb

  1. To heat (a liquid) to the point where it begins to turn into a gas.
    Boil some water in a pan.
  2. To cook in boiling water.
    Boil the eggs for two minutes.
  3. Of a liquid, to begin to turn into a gas.
    Pure water boils at 100 degrees Celsius.
  4. Said of weather being uncomfortably hot.
    It's boiling outside!
  5. To feel uncomfortably hot.
    I'm boiling in here - could you open the window?
Synonyms
Antonyms
Related terms
Translations
heat (a liquid) until it begins to turn into a gas
cook in boiling water
begin to turn into a gas
colloquial: of the weather, to be uncomfortably hot
colloquial: of a person, to be uncomfortably hot

Extensive Definition

Boil or furuncle is a skin disease caused by the inflammation of hair follicles, thus resulting in the localized accumulation of pus and dead tissue. Individual boils can cluster together and form an interconnected network of boils called carbuncles. In severe cases, boils may develop to form abscesses.

Symptoms

The symptoms of boils are red, pus-filled lumps that are tender, warm, and/or painful. A yellow or white point at the center of the lump can be seen when the boil is ready to drain or discharge pus. In a severe infection, multiple boils may develop and the patient may experience fever and swollen lymph nodes. A recurring boil is called chronic furunculosis.
In some people, itching may develop before the lumps begin to develop. Boils are most often found on the back, stomach, underarms, shoulders, face, lip, eyes, nose, thighs and buttocks, but may be found elsewhere. Boils on the ear tend to be more painful, and can create shooting pain in the entire area when touched.
Sometimes boils will emit an unpleasant smell, particularly when drained or when discharge is present, due to the presence of bacteria in the discharge.

Causes

Boils are generally caused by an infection of the hair follicles by Staphylococcus aureus, a strain of bacterium that normally lives on the skin surface. It is thought that a tiny cut of the skin allows this bacterium to enter the follicles and cause an infection. This can happen during bathing or while using a razor.
People with immune system disorders, diabetes, poor hygiene or malnutrition (Vitamin A or E deficiency) are particularly susceptible to getting boils; however, they also occur in healthy, hygienic individuals, due to over scratching a particular area of the skin.
Hidradenitis suppurativa causes frequent boils. Boils in the armpits can sometimes be caused by anti-perspirant deodorants.
The development of boils throughout the body is also a symptom of smallpox.

Treatments

Most boils run their course within 4 to 10 days. For most people, self-care by applying a warm compress or soaking the boil in warm water can help alleviate the pain and hasten draining of the pus (colloquially referred to as "bringing the boil to a head"). Once the boil drains, the area should be washed with antibacterial soap and bandaged well. The maturing process may be accelerated by applying Ichthammol-based salve.
In serious cases, prescription oral antibiotics such as dicloxacillin (Dynapen) or cephalexin (Keflex), or topical antibiotics, are commonly used. For patients allergic to penicillin-based drugs, erythromycin (E-base, Erycin) may also be used.
However, some boils are caused by a super bug known as Community-Associated Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus, or CA-MRSA. Bactrim or other sulfa drugs must be prescribed relatively soon after such a boil has started to form. MRSA tends to increase the speed of growth of the infection.
Also some boils can be caused by having too much iron in your system whether taking seperately or in taking too many vitamin supplements.
Magnesium sulphate (epsom salt) paste applied to the affected area can prevent the growth of bacteria and reduce boils by absorbing pus and drying up the lesion.

References

External links

boil in Danish: Furunkel
boil in German: Furunkel
boil in Estonian: Furunkul
boil in French: Furoncle
boil in Hebrew: פורונקל
boil in Lithuanian: Šunvotė
boil in Dutch: Steenpuist
boil in Japanese: せつ
boil in Polish: Czyrak
boil in Portuguese: Furúnculo
boil in Russian: Фурункул
boil in Simple English: Boil
boil in Finnish: Furunkuloosi
boil in Swedish: Furunkel
boil in Turkish: Çıban

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

abscess, agitation, antisepticize, aposteme, autoclave, bake, barbecue, baste, be in heat, be livid, be pissed, bed sore, blain, blanch, blaze, bleb, blister, bloom, blow up, blubber, bluster, bobbery, boil over, boiling, bolt, braise, brew, bristle, broil, brouhaha, brown, browned off, bubble, bubble over, bubble up, bubo, bulla, bump, bunion, burble, burn, bustle, canker, canker sore, carbuncle, carry on, casserole, chafe, chancre, chancroid, charge, chase, chilblain, chlorinate, choke, churn, coction, coddle, cold sore, combust, commotion, conturbation, cook, corn, course, cover, culinary masterpiece, culinary preparation, curry, cyst, dash, decoct, decoction, decontaminate, delouse, devil, dilatation, dilation, discomposure, dish, disinfect, disorder, disquiet, disquietude, distension, distill, disturbance, do, do to perfection, ebullience, ebulliency, ebulliometer, ebullition, edema, effervesce, embroilment, entree, eschar, excitement, felon, ferment, fermentation, fester, festering, fever, fever blister, feverishness, fidgets, fire, fistula, fizz, fizzle, flame, flame up, flap, flare, flare up, flicker, fling, flurry, flush, fluster, flutteration, foam, foment, fret, fricassee, frizz, frizzle, fry, fulminate, fume, fumigate, furuncle, furunculus, fuss, gasp, gathering, glow, go on, griddle, grill, guggle, gumboil, gurgle, have a conniption, heat, hemorrhoids, hiss, hubbub, hurly-burly, hygienize, incandesce, inquietude, intumescence, jitters, jumpiness, kibe, lash, lesion, lump, maelstrom, main dish, malaise, moil, nerviness, nervosity, nervousness, oven-bake, pan, pan-broil, pant, papula, papule, parboil, parch, paronychia, parulis, pasteurize, perturbation, petechia, piles, pimple, pissed off, plop, poach, pock, polyp, prepare, prepare food, pustule, race, radiate heat, rage, raise Cain, raise hell, raise the devil, raise the roof, rant, rant and rave, rave, restlessness, rising, roast, roil, rout, row, sanitate, sanitize, saute, scab, scald, scallop, scorch, sear, sebaceous cyst, seethe, seething, shimmer with heat, shirr, shoot, side dish, simmer, simmering, sizzle, smoke, smolder, smother, smoulder, soft chancre, sore, spark, sparkle, splutter, sputter, steam, sterilize, stew, stewing, stifle, stigma, stir, stir-fry, storm, sty, suffocate, suppuration, sweat, swell, swelling, swelter, swirl, swollenness, take on, tear, throw a fit, to-do, toast, trepidation, trepidity, tubercle, tumefaction, tumescence, tumidity, tumor, tumult, tumultuation, turbidity, turbulence, turgescence, turgescency, turgidity, turmoil, twitter, ulcer, ulceration, unease, unrest, upset, wale, welt, wen, wheal, whelk, whitlow, work, wound
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