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  1. a comprehensive physical examination: He went to the doctor for a checkup.
  2. an examination or close scrutiny, as for verification, accuracy, or comparison: They gave the motor a checkup.

Origin of checkup

1885–90, Americanism; noun use of verb phrase check up
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for checkup


  1. an examination to see if something is in order
  2. med a medical examination, esp one taken at regular intervals to verify a normal state of health or discover a disease in its early stages
verb check up
  1. (intr, adverb sometimes foll by on) to investigate or make an inquiry into (a person's character, evidence, etc), esp when suspicions have been aroused
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for checkup


also check-up, "careful examination," 1921, American English, from check (v.) + up (adv.), on notion of a checklist of things to be examined. The verbal phrase check up (on) is attested from 1889.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

checkup in Medicine


  1. An examination or inspection.
  2. A general physical examination.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.