noun Pathology.
  1. general ill health with emaciation, usually occurring in association with cancer or a chronic infectious disease.
Also ca·chex·y [kuh-kek-see] /kəˈkɛk si/

Origin of cachexia

1535–45; < Late Latin < Greek, equivalent to kak(ós) bad + héx(is) condition (hek-, variant stem of échein to have + -sis -sis) + -ia -ia
Related formsca·chec·tic [kuh-kek-tik] /kəˈkɛk tɪk/, ca·chec·ti·cal, ca·chex·ic, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for cachectic

Historical Examples of cachectic

British Dictionary definitions for cachectic


cachexy (kəˈkɛksɪ)

  1. a generally weakened condition of body or mind resulting from any debilitating chronic disease
Derived Formscachectic (kəˈkɛktɪk), adjective

Word Origin for cachexia

C16: from Late Latin from Greek kakhexia, from kakos bad + hexis condition, habit
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 cachectic

1630s, from Latinized form of Greek kakhektikos "in a bad habit of body" (see cachexia).



"bad general state of health," 1540s, from Latinized form of Greek kakhexia "bad habits," from kakos "bad" (see caco-) + -exia, related to exis "habit or state," from exein "to have, be in a condition," from PIE root *segh- "to hold, hold in one's power, to have" (see scheme (n.)). Related: cachexic.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

cachectic in Medicine


  1. Affected by or relating to cachexia.


  1. Weight loss, wasting of muscle, loss of appetite, and general debility that can occur during a chronic disease.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

cachectic in Science


  1. Severe weight loss, anorexia, and general debility that occur as a result of chronic disease. Cachetic patients exhibit signs of malnutrition, including muscle wasting.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.