Medical Definition of Bezoar

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Bezoar: A clump or wad of swallowed food or hair. Bezoars can block the digestive system, especially the exit of the stomach. A bezoar composed of hair is called a trichobezoar. A bezoar composed of vegetable materials is called a phytobezoar. A bezoar composed of hair and food is called a trichophytobezoar. Rapunzel syndrome is the name that has been used to refer to a condition in which the intestinal tract is blocked by a trichobezoar due to swallowing one’s own hair.

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Reviewed on 9/20/2017

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