infection

noun
in·​fec·​tion | \ in-ˈfek-shən How to pronounce infection (audio) \

Definition of infection

1a : the state produced by the establishment of one or more pathogenic agents (such as a bacteria, protozoans, or viruses) in or on the body of a suitable host an infection in his foot
b : a disease resulting from infection contagious infections infections of childhood
2 : an act or process of infecting something or someone also : the establishment of a pathogen in its host after invasion
3 : an infectious agent or material contaminated with an infectious agent … that notion that the infection was all in the air, that there was no such thing as contagion from the sick people to the sound …— Daniel Defoe It may not be uninteresting to add, that this case I vaccinated with infection taken from a secondary pock on the arm of her sister …— John Redman Coxe
4 : the communication of emotions or qualities through example or contact But immediately she resisted this intolerable fear as an infection from her husband's way of thinking.— George Eliot also : the emotion or quality that is communicated … as the evening wore on, she caught the infection of their excitement … — Thomas Hardy Besides, I know what sort of a mind I have placed in communication with my own: I know it is one not liable to take infection— Charlotte Brontë
5 : the act or result of corrupting someone's morals, character, etc. … it is at least as difficult to stay a moral infection as a physical one …— Charles Dickens … they could not know the origin—or the depth—of his susceptibility to the infection of power.— Robert A. Caro

Examples of infection in a Sentence

Poor hygiene can increase the danger of infection. The wound has so far remained free of infection. steps you can take to decrease your computer's risk of infection
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Recent Examples on the Web

Inflammation is a normal part of the body's response to illness and injury, one method of fighting infection or healing wounds. Lauran Neergaard, chicagotribune.com, "Scientists rethink Alzheimer’s, diversifying the drug search," 11 Sep. 2019 Some cases with gastrointestinal symptoms, McDonald said, end up getting diagnosed in primary care as an infection and treated with antibiotics. San Diego Union-Tribune, "More deaths associated with mysterious vaping illness; 11 cases reported in San Diego County," 6 Sep. 2019 Lori Farris, 50, a special needs teacher, spotted the kitten, 5 weeks old at the time in the little town of Floral City, with a bloody nose, an eye infection and fleas. Joe Mario Pedersen, orlandosentinel.com, "Florida kitten with ‘facial condition’ becomes internet star," 6 Sep. 2019 The disease is caused by genetic and environmental factors — sun exposure, infections and reactions to medications can all bring it out, though the cause is often unknown. Julie Mazziotta, PEOPLE.com, "Kim Kardashian Believes She Has Lupus in New KUWTK Trailer: ‘I Feel This in My Bones’," 5 Sep. 2019 Coming into contact with the bacteria can cause diarrhea, stomach cramps, rashes, respiratory infections and other illnesses, the Oregon Health Authority warns. Jamie Hale | The Oregonian/oregonlive, oregonlive, "Health advisory issued for Short Sand Beach due to fecal bacteria," 4 Sep. 2019 Enteric bacteria normally inhabit the intestinal tract of humans and animals and exposure to it can cause disease, infections or rashes. Leada Gore | Lgore@al.com, al, "Fecal pollution leads to water quality advisories for Gulf Coast beaches," 28 Aug. 2019 Among other symptoms, measles can cause ear infections and diarrhea and more serious illnesses such as pneumonia, encephalitis (swelling around the brain), and even death. Los Angeles Times, "Amid measles warning for Disneyland, other L.A. tourist spots, here is what you need to know," 24 Aug. 2019 Per the Washington Post’s Morgan Krakow, this plastic pollution triggered intestinal inflammation, which in turn led to gastritis, a blood infection and pus in the lungs. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "A Beloved Baby Dugong Has Died After Ingesting Plastic," 19 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'infection.' 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 infection

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Statistics for infection

Last Updated

15 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for infection

The first known use of infection was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for infection

infection

noun

English Language Learners Definition of infection

: the act or process of infecting someone or something : the state of being infected
: a disease caused by germs that enter the body

infection

noun
in·​fec·​tion | \ in-ˈfek-shən How to pronounce infection (audio) \

Kids Definition of infection

1 : the act or process of passing on or introducing a germ, illness, or disease to : the state of being infected
2 : any disease caused by germs an ear infection

infection

noun
in·​fec·​tion | \ in-ˈfek-shən How to pronounce infection (audio) \

Medical Definition of infection

1a : the state produced by the establishment of one or more pathogenic agents or microorganisms (as bacteria, viruses, protozoans, or fungi) in or on the body of a suitable host treated a bacterial infection of the eye
b : a disease resulting from infection : infectious disease common infections of childhood contagious infections
2 : an act or process of infecting something or someone syphilis infection is chiefly venereal also : the establishment of a pathogen in its host after invasion
3 : an infectious agent or material contaminated with an infectious agent

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Comments on infection

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