excessively sensitive: to be hypersensitive to criticism.
allergic to a substance to which persons do not normally react.

Origin of hypersensitive

First recorded in 1870–75; hyper- + sensitive
Related formshy·per·sen·si·tive·ness, hy·per·sen·si·tiv·i·ty, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for hypersensitive

Contemporary Examples of hypersensitive

Historical Examples of hypersensitive

  • It was no time for Clancy to be hypersensitive about Vandervent's honor.

    Find the Woman

    Arthur Somers Roche

  • A conscience newly aroused by her terrible tragedy and hypersensitive?

    Clark's Field

    Robert Herrick

  • He is hypersensitive and emotional, not argumentative and judicial.

  • Radowitz, in all matters connected with money, was hypersensitive and touchy.

    Lady Connie

    Mrs. Humphry Ward

  • The bald stubby man waddling forward looked neither calloused nor hypersensitive.

British Dictionary definitions for hypersensitive



having unduly vulnerable feelings
abnormally sensitive to an allergen, a drug, or other agent
Derived Formshypersensitiveness or hypersensitivity, 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 hypersensitive

1827, a hybrid from hyper- + sensitive. Related: Hypersensitivity.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

hypersensitive in Medicine




Responding excessively to the stimulus of a foreign agent, such as an allergen; abnormally sensitive.
Related formshy′per•sensi•tive•ness null n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.