dis·​rup·​tion dis-ˈrəp-shən How to pronounce disruption (audio)
plural disruptions
: the act or process of disrupting something : a break or interruption in the normal course or continuation of some activity, process, etc.
disruption of sleep
disruptions in service
a process that has continued without disruption
Throughout the history of medicine, health has been seen as a condition of equilibrium and illness as the disruption of a balanced state.David Mechanic
By 1925 most countries had recovered from the economic disruptions caused by the Great War of 1914-18.John A. Garraty

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Storm warnings were issued in some areas but there were no reports of voting disruptions. CBS News, 16 May 2023 And the beleaguered Eastern European country selected Tvorchi, an electro pop-duo, in a live television program filmed in a metro station below Kyiv to avoid any disruption from the war. Andrew Jones, NBC News, 13 May 2023 So this year, schools in Ohio, Colorado, Maryland, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Virginia, California, and others banned the devices in class to curb student obsession, learning disruption, disciplinary incidents, and mental health worries. Donna St. George, BostonGlobe.com, 9 May 2023 But the comparison to the percentages from 2021 (the first round of tests after big pandemic disruptions) and from 2022 showed considerable improvement. Alan J. Borsuk, Journal Sentinel, 8 May 2023 Organizations that continuously evolve their skills and pair technical mastery with strong human and business-enabling skills are better positioned to innovate, adapt and thrive in an era of constant disruption. Will Markow, Forbes, 5 May 2023 This was not Gonzalez’s first time causing a disruption at a game, Lopez said, though his actions had never reached this level. Sara Smart, CNN, 5 May 2023 The exhibition giant continues to have a high debt load following disruption to its sector from the pandemic crisis and its impact on the local multiplex. Etan Vlessing, The Hollywood Reporter, 5 May 2023 Frequent disruptions put us on high alert like a jack-in-the-box, triggering a release of adrenaline, norepinephrine and cortisol. Brittany Harker Martin, Fortune Well, 4 May 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'disruption.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1622, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of disruption was in 1622

Dictionary Entries Near disruption

Cite this Entry

“Disruption.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disruption. Accessed 5 Jun. 2023.

Medical Definition


dis·​rup·​tion dis-ˈrəp-shən How to pronounce disruption (audio)
: the act or process of breaking apart or rupturing
bandaged her leg tightly to prevent disruption of the partly healed wound
disrupt transitive verb

More from Merriam-Webster on disruption

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