chronic

adjective
chron·​ic | \ ˈkrä-nik How to pronounce chronic (audio) \

Definition of chronic

1a : continuing or occurring again and again for a long time chronic indigestion chronic experiments
b : suffering from a chronic disease the special needs of chronic patients
2a : always present or encountered especially : constantly vexing, weakening, or troubling chronic petty warfare chronic meddling in one another's domestic affairs— Amatzia Baram
b : being such habitually a chronic grumbler

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Other Words from chronic

chronic noun
chronically \ ˈkrä-​ni-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce chronic (audio) \ adverb
chronicity \ krä-​ˈni-​sə-​tē How to pronounce chronic (audio) , krō-​ \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for chronic

inveterate, confirmed, chronic mean firmly established. inveterate applies to a habit, attitude, or feeling of such long existence as to be practically ineradicable or unalterable. an inveterate smoker confirmed implies a growing stronger and firmer with time so as to resist change or reform. a confirmed bachelor chronic suggests something that is persistent or endlessly recurrent and troublesome. a chronic complainer

Did You Know?

Chronic coughing goes on and on; chronic lateness occurs day after day; chronic lameness never seems to get any better. Unfortunately, situations that we call chronic almost always seem to be unpleasant. We never hear about chronic peace, but we do hear about chronic warfare. And we never speak of chronic health, only of chronic illness.

Examples of chronic in a Sentence

He suffers from chronic arthritis. a chronic need for attention Inflation has become a chronic condition in the economy. Don't bother seeing that film—it's chronic.
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Recent Examples on the Web In Houston, where senior citizens and those ages 16 and up with chronic conditions are eligible, an appointment hotline crashed after 250,000 people called. Los Angeles Times, "U.S. vaccination campaign runs far behind schedule," 5 Jan. 2021 Previously, Amazon customers had been directed to a separate site geared toward patients with complex, chronic medical conditions. Sebastian Herrera, WSJ, "Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, JPMorgan End Health-Care Venture Haven," 4 Jan. 2021 Starting Monday, the public hospital system would vaccinate anyone 65 or older, as well as younger people with chronic health conditions. Liz Hardaway, ExpressNews.com, "University Health appeals for ‘patience’ as it awaits more doses of COVID vaccine," 2 Jan. 2021 Thursday, the store has dedicated shopping time for senior citizens and those with chronic health conditions. Kelly Tyko, USA TODAY, "When are grocery stores open New Year's Eve? Check this list for special hours at Target, Costco and more," 31 Dec. 2020 The Deep South state has some of the highest rates of certain chronic health conditions that increase the risk of death or serious illness from the coronavirus. Arkansas Online, "'Like a bathtub filling up': Alabama is slammed by the virus," 30 Dec. 2020 High rates of overweight and obesity in the United States are linked to serious chronic health conditions like heart disease and Type 2 diabetes, the panel noted; the conditions also increase the risk of developing severe COVID-19 illness. Roni Caryn Rabin, BostonGlobe.com, "US diet guidelines sidestep scientific advice to cut sugar and alcohol," 30 Dec. 2020 One in four of those people was 18 to 34 years old and had no chronic medical conditions before falling ill with Covid-19, according to CDC’s report, released in July. Elizabeth Cooney, STAT, "Explanations for ‘long Covid’ remain elusive. For now, believing patients and treating symptoms is the best doctors can do," 29 Dec. 2020 Tennessee will prioritize those with high-risk chronic conditions after all healthcare workers are vaccinated. David Hogberg, Washington Examiner, "Red states prioritize elderly and vulnerable in vaccine distribution, bucking federal guidance," 29 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'chronic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of chronic

1601, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for chronic

borrowed from French chronique, going back to Middle French, borrowed from Late Latin chronicus, going back to Latin, "written in the form of annals," borrowed from Greek chronikós "of time, temporal, in order by time," from chrónos "time" + -ikos -ic entry 1 — more at chrono-

Note: Latin chronicus was used by medical writers (as Caelius Aurelianus, ca. early 5th century A.D.) to translate Greek chrónios "occurring again and again," used by Greek medical writers, though Greek chronikós, the source of chronicus, lacks this sense.

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Time Traveler for chronic

Time Traveler

The first known use of chronic was in 1601

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Statistics for chronic

Last Updated

13 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Chronic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/chronic. Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for chronic

chronic

adjective
How to pronounce chronic (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of chronic

medical : continuing or occurring again and again for a long time
: happening or existing frequently or most of the time
: always or often doing something specified

chronic

adjective
chron·​ic | \ ˈkrä-nik How to pronounce chronic (audio) \

Kids Definition of chronic

1 : continuing for a long time or returning often a chronic disease
2 : happening or done frequently or by habit a chronic complainer chronic tardiness

Other Words from chronic

chronically \ -​ni-​kə-​lē \ adverb

chronic

adjective
chron·​ic | \ ˈkrän-ik How to pronounce chronic (audio) \
variants: also chronical \ -​i-​kəl How to pronounce chronic (audio) \

Medical Definition of chronic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : marked by long duration, by frequent recurrence over a long time, and often by slowly progressing seriousness : not acute chronic indigestion her hallucinations became chronic
b : suffering from a disease or ailment of long duration or frequent recurrence a chronic arthritic chronic sufferers from asthma
2a : having a slow progressive course of indefinite duration used especially of degenerative invasive diseases, some infections, psychoses, and inflammationschronic heart diseasechronic arthritischronic tuberculosis — compare acute sense 2b(1)
b : infected with a disease-causing agent (as a virus) and remaining infectious over a long period of time but not necessarily expressing symptoms chronic carriers may remain healthy but still transmit the virus causing hepatitis B

Other Words from chronic

chronically \ -​i-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce chronic (audio) \ adverb
chronicity \ krä-​ˈnis-​ət-​ē, krō-​ How to pronounce chronic (audio) \ noun, plural chronicities

chronic

noun

Medical Definition of chronic (Entry 2 of 2)

: one that suffers from a chronic disease

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