Definition of aetiology in English:


Line breaks: aeti|ology
Pronunciation: /ˌiːtɪˈɒlədʒi
(US etiology)


[mass noun]
  • 1 Medicine The cause, set of causes, or manner of causation of a disease or condition: the importance of sunlight in the aetiology of melanoma [count noun]: a group of distinct diseases with different aetiologies
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    • Lung transplantation represents the last therapeutic option for advanced lung disease of many etiologies.
    • The authors note that acute MIs in their two study groups probably have different etiologies.
    • A variety of etiologies accounted for the condition.
  • 1.1The causation of diseases and disorders as a subject of investigation.
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    • Our conclusions may be helpful in the further investigation of etiology, diagnosis, and therapy for MCS.
    • This article reviews the epidemiology, etiology, and diagnosis of seizure disorders in the elderly.
    • Research in disease aetiology has shifted towards investigating genetic causes, powered by the human genome project.
  • 2The investigation or attribution of the cause or reason for something, often expressed in terms of historical or mythical explanation.
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    • Their etiology and teleology are explicable within a moral and historical paradigm.
    • No single ‘explanation’, no minimalist aetiology, can catch the richness and multivalence of the event.
    • Aristotle displays some hesitation in his discussion of desire and its relation to practical reason in the aetiology of animal action.



Pronunciation: /-əˈlɒdʒɪk/
More example sentences
  • A possible etiologic relation to chronic inflammation and lung fibrosis is supported.
  • The etiologic role of HPV infections in cancers of the lower genital tract is well established.
  • Numerous investigators have studied the etiologic pathogens associated with otitis media in children.


Pronunciation: /-əˈlɒdʒɪk(ə)l/
More example sentences
  • Rapid etiological diagnosis will help in timely institution of specific therapy.
  • These aetiological factors are not mutually exclusive.
  • Disconcertingly, however, many of the aetiological questions asked over 150 years ago are still unanswered.


Pronunciation: /-əˈlɒdʒɪk(ə)li/
More example sentences
  • The fetal origins of type 2 diabetes, an aetiologically distinct disorder, are now well established.
  • An important step in meeting this challenge is to integrate interventions whose targets are linked, socially and aetiologically.
  • Stress may be obvious and likely to be aetiologically implicated.


mid 16th century: via medieval Latin from Greek aitiologia, from aitia 'a cause' + -logia (see -logy).

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Pronunciation: skəʊʃ
a small amount; a little