in·​op·​er·​a·​ble | \ (ˌ)in-ˈä-p(ə-)rə-bəl How to pronounce inoperable (audio) \

Definition of inoperable

1 : not treatable or remediable by surgery an inoperable brain tumor
2 : not functioning : inoperative

Examples of inoperable in a Sentence

a patient with inoperable cancer The device makes the car inoperable when a key is not used to start it.
Recent Examples on the Web The Green Line work train used for maintenance has been inoperable for at least eight months, the FTA found. Globe Staff,, 15 June 2022 Without a power source, the equipment was inoperable. Souad Mekhennet, Washington Post, 28 May 2022 Pérez publicly announced his then-stage three pancreatic cancer diagnosis in December 2021, telling fans that the cancer was inoperable and doctors had given him six months to a year to live. Abbey White, The Hollywood Reporter, 7 May 2022 All voting machines should have secondary backup storage and any machine that is deemed inoperable should be repaired on site. Baltimore Sun, 18 May 2022 Bows that are completely inoperable, preferably un-strung, but loosely strung is also allowed. Sofia Krusmark, The Arizona Republic, 18 May 2022 In December 2021, Pérez announced on his Facebook page that he had been diagnosed with inoperable pancreatic cancer and would not seek chemotherapy or radiation treatment. Christian Holub,, 7 May 2022 That public act of kinetic destruction accompanied a much more hidden but no less damaging action: targeting a prominent Ukrainian broadcaster with malware to render its computers inoperable. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, 27 Apr. 2022 The code was designed to delete data and render computer systems inoperable. New York Times, 6 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of inoperable

1886, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for inoperable

probably from French inopérable

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The first known use of inoperable was in 1886

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Last Updated

20 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Inoperable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for inoperable


in·​op·​er·​a·​ble | \ (ˈ)in-ˈäp-(ə-)rə-bəl How to pronounce inoperable (audio) \

Medical Definition of inoperable

: not treatable or remediable by or suitable for surgery an advanced and inoperable cancer a developing cataract still inoperable

Other Words from inoperable

inoperability \ (ˌ)in-​ˌäp-​(ə-​)rə-​ˈbil-​ət-​ē How to pronounce inoperable (audio) \ noun, plural inoperabilities

More from Merriam-Webster on inoperable

Nglish: Translation of inoperable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of inoperable for Arabic Speakers


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