noun eti·ol·o·gy \ˌē-tē-ˈä-lə-jē\
plural eti·ol·o·gies

Definition of ETIOLOGY

:  cause, origin; specifically :  the cause of a disease or abnormal condition
:  a branch of knowledge concerned with causes; specifically :  a branch of medical science concerned with the causes and origins of diseases

Examples of ETIOLOGY

  1. The scarf had been purchased in one of those tiny, exquisitely organized stores that can seduce you into thinking it matters less what you wear than how you accessorize what you wear, and the scarf came in just the noncolor colors that I like: mustard and khaki and taupe, shades of dun, nothing too vivid, yet subtly enlivening. I have traced the etiology of this object the better to convey the irrational significance of its loss. —Daphne Merkin, New York Times Magazine, 5 May 1991

Origin of ETIOLOGY

Medieval Latin aetiologia statement of causes, from Greek aitiologia, from aitia cause
First Known Use: circa 1555

Other Medicine Terms

analgesia, angina, diabetes, hepatitis, homeopathy, logorrhea, palliate, pandemic
Medical Dictionary


noun eti·ol·o·gy
plural eti·ol·o·gies

Medical Definition of ETIOLOGY

:  the cause or causes of a disease or abnormal condition <some types of cancer have a viral etiology> <a multiple etiology in which biological, psychological, and sociocultural factors all play a role—M. E. Jackson et al>
:  a branch of medical science dealing with the causes and origin of diseases

Variants of ETIOLOGY

eti·ol·o·gy or chiefly British ae·ti·ol·o·gy \ˌēt-ē-ˈäl-ə-jē\


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