hypochondria

noun
hy·​po·​chon·​dria | \ ˌhī-pə-ˈkän-drē-ə How to pronounce hypochondria (audio) \

Definition of hypochondria

: excessive concern about one's health especially when accompanied by imagined physical ailments But we all have just a touch of hypochondria. Who can read the symptoms of bubonic plague and not cry, "Hey, that sounds like what I've got."— Bob Swift specifically : illness anxiety disorder Hypochondria involves persistent, unfounded fears about having a serious disease. It affects about 5 percent of patients who seek help from primary-care doctors. The Associated Press

Examples of hypochondria in a Sentence

She fueled her hypochondria by reading articles about rare diseases.
Recent Examples on the Web And Dostoyevsky, with the infernal reveler ejected, is relieved that second of his hemorrhoids, his gambling habit, his seizures, his fevers, his depression, his hypochondria, his appalling futuristic intuitions and obsessions. James Parker, The Atlantic, 19 Oct. 2021 To suggest otherwise is nothing short of political hypochondria. Cameron Hilditch, National Review, 12 Aug. 2021 These Sutter pop-up clinics are for urgent care, meaning an ailment that lies somewhere between hypochondria and the emergency room. Sam Whiting, SFChronicle.com, 18 Apr. 2020 Refinery29 spoke to a young woman whose hypochondria has spiralled since the news broke that coronavirus had hit the UK. Jessica Morgan, refinery29.com, 10 Mar. 2020 In Hippocrates’ Aphorisms, hypochondria referred to the soft part of the body below the ribs. Alyson Pomerantz, Longreads, 3 Sep. 2019 Affected children may have sleep disorders, school problems ranging from avoidance and absence to underachievement, discipline problems, and hypochondria. Rachel Pearson, The New Yorker, 10 June 2019 In 2001 Ellroy suffered episodes of sleeplessness and hypochondria and, eventually, a nervous breakdown. The Economist, 8 June 2019 This was certainly the case with my battle against hypochondria. Liv Boeree, Vox, 30 Nov. 2018 See More

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

First Known Use of hypochondria

1700, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hypochondria

earlier, "organs of the upper abdomen behind the ribs (including the liver and gallbladder, thought to be the seat of melancholy)," borrowed from Late Latin, borrowed from Greek hypochóndria, plural of hypochóndrion (referring to either the left or right side of these organs), noun derivative from neuter of hypochóndrios "located beneath the cartilage (connecting the ribs and sternum)," from hypo- hypo- + -chondrios, adjective derivative of chóndros "gristle, cartilage" — more at chondro-

Note: Earlier also in the Anglicized form hypochondry, hypocondry, usually in the plural hypocondries, as in the following passage from Robert Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy (Oxford, 1621), p. 25: "The third Region is the lower Belly in which the liuer resides … with the rest of those naturall Organes, seruing for concoction, nourishment, expelling of excrements. This lower Region is distinguished from the vpper by the Midriffe, or Diaphragma, and is subdiuided againe by some into three concauities, or regions, vpper, middle, and lower. The upper of the Hypocondries, in whose right side is the Liuer, the left the Spleene. From which is denominated Hypocondriacall Melancholy."

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The first known use of hypochondria was in 1700

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Cite this Entry

“Hypochondria.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hypochondria. Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for hypochondria

hypochondria

noun
hy·​po·​chon·​dria | \ ˌhī-pə-ˈkän-drē-ə How to pronounce hypochondria (audio) \

Medical Definition of hypochondria

: excessive concern about one's health especially when accompanied by imagined physical ailments specifically : illness anxiety disorder Hypochondria involves persistent, unfounded fears about having a serious disease. It affects about 5 percent of patients who seek help from primary-care doctors. The Associated Press

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