[ ih-nur-veyt, in-er-veyt ]
/ ɪˈnɜr veɪt, ˈɪn ərˌveɪt /

verb (used with object), in·ner·vat·ed, in·ner·vat·ing.

to communicate nervous energy to; stimulate through nerves.
to furnish with nerves; grow nerves into.

Origin of innervate

First recorded in 1865–70; in-2 + nerve + -ate1

Can be confused

energize enervate innervate invigorate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for innervate

British Dictionary definitions for innervate


/ (ˈɪnɜːˌveɪt) /

verb (tr)

to supply nerves to (a bodily organ or part)
to stimulate (a bodily organ or part) with nerve impulses

Derived Forms

innervation, 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

Medicine definitions for innervate


[ ĭ-nûrvāt′, ĭnər- ]


To supply an organ or a body part with nerves.
To stimulate a nerve, muscle, or body part to action.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.