[im-pair-muh nt]


the state of being diminished, weakened, or damaged, especially mentally or physically: cognitive impairment in older adults.

Origin of impairment Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for impairment

deterioration, ruination, wreckage, damage, destruction

Examples from the Web for impairment

Contemporary Examples of impairment

  • A more precise association of THC levels and degrees of impairment are not yet available.

  • Yet in this case, the degree of impairment seems to have been similar on both sides.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Sex, Booze, and Feminism

    Cathy Young

    February 22, 2014

  • In general, the disabled folks are vulnerable to exploitation, in part because of the nature of their impairment.

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    Philly's Terrified Basement Prisoners

    Jeff Deeney

    October 16, 2011

  • As a group, no overall statistically significant improvement or impairment was seen as a result of taking Adderall.

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    Busting the Adderall Myth

    Casey Schwartz

    December 21, 2010

  • But without any evidence of impairment, the FHP had no choice but to give Woods a routine traffic citation.

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    The Tiger Coverup

    Steve Helling

    May 3, 2010

Historical Examples of impairment

Word Origin and History for impairment

mid-14c., emparement, from Old French empeirement, from empeirier (see impair). Re-Latinized spelling is from 1610s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

impairment in Medicine




Weakening, damage, or deterioration, especially as a result of injury or disease.
Related formsim•pair v.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.