(1) Arteriosclerosis: Hardening and thickening of the walls of the arteries. Arteriosclerosis can occur because of fatty deposits on the inner lining of arteries (atherosclerosis), calcification of the wall of the arteries, or thickening of the muscular wall of the arteries from chronically elevated blood pressure (hypertension).
Common Misspellings: artheriosclerosis
(2) noun a degenerative disease principally affecting the aorta and its major branches, the coronary artery, and the larger cerebral arteries. The arterial changes include narrowing of the lumen of the vessels; weakening of the arterioles, leading to rupture; an increased tendency toward development of atheromatous plaques; and thrombi. Atherosclerosis is a common cause of myocardial infarctions and cerebrovascular accident.