pain·​kill·​er | \ ˈpān-ˌki-lər How to pronounce painkiller (audio) \
variants: or less commonly pain-killer

Definition of painkiller

: something (such as a drug) that relieves pain

Other Words from painkiller

pain-killing \ ˈpān-​ˌki-​liŋ How to pronounce painkiller (audio) \ or painkilling adjective

Synonyms for painkiller


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Examples of painkiller in a Sentence

I took some over-the-counter painkillers for my headache. a lot of painkillers have turned out to be addictive substances for patients
Recent Examples on the Web What teens may think is an opioid painkiller or Xanax diverted from the legal supply is now more likely to be a counterfeit tablet containing fentanyl or similar synthetic opioids. Andrew Joseph, STAT, 14 Apr. 2022 If you are prescribed an opioid painkiller, ask if there is an alternative. Taylyn Washington-harmon, Men's Health, 14 Apr. 2022 Purdue Pharma knew OxyContin was widely misused, but continued to promote the painkiller as less addictive. New York Times, 13 Apr. 2022 He was released due to painkiller addiction, according to NBC San Diego. NBC News, 4 Mar. 2022 In several cases, the bottles contained the wrong pills, including an over-the-counter painkiller and an antipsychotic drug instead of the HIV medications the patients were prescribed, the company alleged. Joseph Walker, WSJ, 18 Jan. 2022 Purdue Pharma knew OxyContin was widely misused, but continued to promote the painkiller as less addictive. New York Times, 13 Apr. 2022 The deal comes after years of litigation over the marketing of the OxyContin painkiller, which was a cash cow for the drugmaker and became a poster child for the nationwide epidemic. Ed Silverman, STAT, 5 Mar. 2022 Wearing sunglasses and hoodies, the salesmen danced next to an executive dressed as a Subsys spray bottle and sang their own lyrics to an A$AP Rocky song to prod co-workers to get more doctors to prescribe the painkiller., 13 Jan. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of painkiller

1849, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for painkiller

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The first known use of painkiller was in 1849

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Dictionary Entries Near painkiller

painful to the touch



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Statistics for painkiller

Last Updated

6 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Painkiller.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for painkiller


pain·​kill·​er | \ -ˌkil-ər How to pronounce painkiller (audio) \

Medical Definition of painkiller

: something (as a drug) that relieves pain

Other Words from painkiller

painkilling \ -​iŋ How to pronounce painkiller (audio) \ adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on painkiller

Nglish: Translation of painkiller for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of painkiller for Arabic Speakers


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