A stenosis (from Ancient Greek στενός, "narrow") is an abnormal narrowing in a blood vessel or other tubular organ or structure. It is also sometimes called a stricture (as in urethral stricture).
Stricture as a term is usually used when narrowing is caused by contraction of smooth muscle (e.g. achalasia, prinzmetal angina); stenosis is usually used when narrowing is caused by lesion that reduces the space of lumen (e.g. atherosclerosis). The term coarctation is another synonym, but is commonly used only in the context of aortic coarctation.
Restenosis is the recurrence of stenosis after a procedure.
Stenoses of the vascular type are often associated with unusual blood sounds resulting from turbulent flow over the narrowed blood vessel. This sound can be made audible by a stethoscope, but diagnosis is generally made or confirmed with some form of medical imaging.