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symptom Syllabification: symp·tom
Pronunciation: /ˈsim(p)təm/

Definition of symptom in English:


1A physical or mental feature that is regarded as indicating a condition of disease, particularly such a feature that is apparent to the patient: dental problems may be a symptom of other illness Compare with sign (sense 1 of the noun).
More example sentences
  • They are often found in patients who have no symptoms of gallbladder disease.
  • The infection may be passed on without causing meningitis or any symptoms of the disease.
  • How can one pick out the symptoms of mental illness in patients who seem otherwise normal?
manifestation, indication, indicator, sign, mark, feature, trait;
Medicine  prodrome
1.1A sign of the existence of something, especially of an undesirable situation: the government was plagued by leaks—a symptom of divisions and poor morale
More example sentences
  • It was not a harbinger, it was a symptom of the move from a bipolar to a unipolar world.
  • The anger or the hatred is in a sense a symptom or a product of the situation that they're caught in.
  • Well worth reading on as he beautifully expresses what I now think is a pretty universal symptom.
portent, warning, clue, hint;
testimony, evidence, proof;
result, consequence, product


Example sentences
  • I worried about contracting diseases - especially symptomless diseases - where my lack of physical complaints simply confirmed the severity of my case.
  • Meanwhile, there could be a large pool of symptomless people who do not realise they are carrying the infectious prion protein responsible for both the cattle brain disease BSE and vCJD.
  • Pre-eclampsia is symptomless in its early stages and at present detectable only by regular checks on the mother's blood pressure and urine.


Late Middle English synthoma, from medieval Latin, based on Greek sumptōma 'chance, symptom', from sumpiptein 'happen'; later influenced by French symptome.

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