chemotherapy

[ kee-moh-ther-uh-pee, kem-oh- ]
/ ˌki moʊˈθɛr ə pi, ˌkɛm oʊ- /

noun Medicine/Medical.

the treatment of disease by means of chemicals that have a specific toxic effect upon the disease-producing microorganisms or that selectively destroy cancerous tissue.

Nearby words

  1. chemosynthetic bacteria,
  2. chemotactic,
  3. chemotaxis,
  4. chemotaxonomy,
  5. chemotherapeutics,
  6. chemotroph,
  7. chemotrophic,
  8. chemotropism,
  9. chempaduk,
  10. chemulpo


Origin of chemotherapy

First recorded in 1905–10; chemo- + therapy

Related formsche·mo·ther·a·pist, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for chemotherapy


British Dictionary definitions for chemotherapy

chemotherapy

/ (ˌkiːməʊˈθɛrəpɪ, kiːmə-) /

noun

treatment of disease, esp cancer, by means of chemical agentsCompare radiotherapy
Derived Formschemotherapist, noun

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 chemotherapy

chemotherapy

n.

1906, from German Chemotherapie, coined by German biochemist Paul Ehrlich (1854-1915), from chemo- + therapie (see therapy).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for chemotherapy

chemotherapy

[ kē′mō-thĕrə-pē ]

n.

The treatment of cancer using specific chemical agents or drugs that are selectively destructive to malignant cells and tissues.
The treatment of disease using chemical agents or drugs that are selectively toxic to the causative agent of the disease, such as a virus or other microorganism.
Related formsche′mo•ther′a•peutic (-pyōōtĭk) adj.che′mo•thera•pist n.


The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for chemotherapy

chemotherapy

[ kē′mō-thĕrə-pē ]

The treatment of disease, especially cancer, using drugs that are destructive to malignant cells and tissues.
The treatment of disease using chemical agents or drugs that are selectively toxic to the causative agent of the disease, such as a microorganism.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Culture definitions for chemotherapy

chemotherapy

[ (kee-moh-ther-uh-pee) ]

The treatment of disease with chemicals. The term chemotherapy often refers to a kind of treatment for cancer in which chemicals are administered to destroy cancer cells.

Note

There are often side effects to chemotherapy, a common one being the temporary loss of hair.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.