• synonyms


[dih-teer-ee-uh-rey-shuh n]
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  1. the act or process of deteriorating.
  2. the state or condition of having deteriorated.
  3. a gradual decline, as in quality, serviceability, or vigor.
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Origin of deterioration

1650–60; < Late Latin dēteriōrātiōn- (stem of dēteriōrātiō), equivalent to dēteriōrāt(us) (see deteriorate) + -iōn- -ion
Related formsnon·de·te·ri·o·ra·tion, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for deterioration

decline, devaluation, slump, degradation, depreciation, downturn, dislocation, disintegration, dilapidation, downfall, perversion, atrophy, decadence, debasement, descent, ruin, lessening, decomposition, declension, retrogression

Examples from the Web for deterioration

Contemporary Examples of deterioration

Historical Examples of deterioration

Word Origin and History for deterioration


1650s, possibly a native formation, or else from French détérioration (15c.), noun of action from détériorer, from Late Latin deteriorare (see deteriorate).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

deterioration in Medicine


  1. The process or condition of becoming worse.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.