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hy·​po·​chon·​dri·​ac ˌhī-pə-ˈkän-drē-ˌak How to pronounce hypochondriac (audio)
anatomy : of, relating to, or being the two regions of the abdomen lying on either side of the epigastric region and above the lumbar regions


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: a person who is often or always worried about his or her own health : a person affected by hypochondria or hypochondriasis
… comparing America's addiction to polls to a hypochondriac's obsessive monitoring of his pulse rate.Erica Goode
Although a self-avowed hypochondriac, he actually did suffer from a variety of ailments …Eugenia Zukerman

Example Sentences

Noun My brother is a real hypochondriac. Every time he reads about some new disease, he thinks he has it.
Recent Examples on the Web
Guesting on Saturday Night Live when everyone had COVID, having a hypochondriac moment on the set of Only Murders in the Building, and refusing adamantly to even attempt a rap with Freestyle Love Supreme. Vulture, 22 Apr. 2022
People no longer view you as a hypochondriac. Richard Lederer, San Diego Union-Tribune, 15 May 2021 Her hypochondriac and pregnant mother, Alli Mauzey, is more invested in her recent carpel tunnel surgery than her daughter’s increasing demise. Jeryl Brunner, Forbes, 23 Jan. 2023 It was written by Robert Hooke, then a 30-year-old hunchbacked, cantankerous, neurotic hypochondriac who was also a brilliant natural scientist, polymath and an original fellow of the society that published the book. Paul Falkowski, Discover Magazine, 29 Apr. 2015 Kimberly’s pregnant mother is a hypochondriac; her best friend, Seth, loves anagrams and plays the tuba; and her aunt is trying to persuade her to commit some white-collar crimes. Diep Tran, New York Times, 26 Oct. 2022 Instead of Williams’ crippled shut-in Laura fussing over her glass figurines in the absence of a husband or happy future, Durang’s version features Lawrence, a hypochondriac who prizes his collection of cocktail swizzle sticks. San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 Nov. 2021 Don’t worry about seeming like a pain or a hypochondriac. Essence, 2 Oct. 2021 Goosed along by Cliff Martinez’s ghostly electronic score, Soderbergh taps into our collective inner hypochondriac, making every character’s sniffle or rubbed eye bristle with potential danger. Tim Grierson, Vulture, 7 July 2021 As seen on the show, Todd is somewhat of a hypochondriac. Eileen Reslen, Country Living, 24 Aug. 2020 See More

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

Word History



earlier, "arising in the hypochondria (organs of the upper abdomen behind the ribs)," borrowed from Middle French hypochondriaque, borrowed from Medieval Latin hypochondriacus, borrowed from Greek hypochondriakós, from hypochóndria + -akos -ac — more at hypochondria


borrowed from Middle French hypochondriaque, noun derivative of hypochondriaque hypochondriac entry 1

First Known Use


1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1639, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of hypochondriac was in 1599

Dictionary Entries Near hypochondriac

Cite this Entry

“Hypochondriac.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hypochondriac. Accessed 8 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


: a person who has hypochondria

Medical Definition


1 of 2 adjective
hy·​po·​chon·​dri·​ac -drē-ˌak How to pronounce hypochondriac (audio)
: situated below the costal cartilages
: of, relating to, or being the two abdominal regions lying on either side of the epigastric region and above the lumbar regions


2 of 2 noun
: an individual affected with hypochondria or hypochondriasis
A person can be said to be a hypochondriac when his or her preoccupation with health or disease is so intense that it disrupts normal living habits and is disproportionate to any medical problems that actually exist.People Weekly
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