path·​o·​log·​i·​cal | \ ˌpa-thə-ˈlä-ji-kəl How to pronounce pathological (audio) \
variants: or less commonly pathologic \ ˌpa-​thə-​ˈlä-​jik How to pronounce pathological (audio) \

Definition of pathological

1 : of or relating to pathology pathological research A pathological examination led to the diagnosis.
2 : altered or caused by disease pathological changes in the body also : indicative of disease pathological symptoms
3 : being such to a degree that is extreme, excessive, or markedly abnormal a pathological liar pathological fear

Other Words from pathological

pathologically \ ˌpa-​thə-​ˈlä-​ji-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce pathological (audio) \ adverb

Examples of pathological in a Sentence

He is a pathological liar. She has a pathological fear of heights. pathological changes in the body
Recent Examples on the Web Bohjalian tracks his players as keenly as a leopard does its prey, matching psychology to fate with an almost pathological precision. Bethanne Patrick, Los Angeles Times, 9 May 2022 But this may be the ex-President's most twisted and pathological attempt yet to corruptly advance his own political career ahead of a possible 2024 White House bid. Stephen Collinson, CNN, 31 Mar. 2022 And, along the way, mask militants love forcing everyone else to indulge their fancies, pagan, petty, or pathological. Brian T. Allen, National Review, 17 Mar. 2022 Policymakers around the world, for instance, often think about diseases from a pathological or biomedical perspective, such as the disease tuberculosis is caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Junaid Nabi, STAT, 28 Feb. 2022 Mass death isn’t inevitable; being concerned about the vulnerable or the course of the pandemic as whole isn’t pathological. Melody Schreiber, The New Republic, 28 Jan. 2022 The work in the microbiome, in part, led to more recent work on viruses as Afeyan and his team questioned whether there are viruses in our bodies that aren’t pathological. Amy Feldman, Forbes, 15 Nov. 2021 For millions of pathological or problem gamblers, betting can end in debt, bankruptcy, family breakdown, criminality, and substance abuse. Matthew Continetti, National Review, 12 Feb. 2022 This series even inspired me to finally recalibrate my emotional and, at times, pathological relationship to food. James Freeman, WSJ, 2 Feb. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of pathological

1656, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pathological

New Latin pathologicus "of the study of the passions, of the study of diseases" (borrowed from Greek pathologikós, from patho- patho- + -logikos, from -logia -logy + -ikos -ic entry 1) + -al entry 1

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Time Traveler for pathological

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The first known use of pathological was in 1656

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pathological drinker

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Last Updated

23 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Pathological.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for pathological


patho·​log·​i·​cal | \ ˌpath-ə-ˈläj-i-kəl How to pronounce pathological (audio) \
variants: also pathologic \ -​ik How to pronounce pathological (audio) \

Medical Definition of pathological

1 : of or relating to pathology a pathological laboratory
2 : altered or caused by disease pathological tissue also : indicative of disease pathological lesions

Other Words from pathological

pathologically \ -​i-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce pathological (audio) \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on pathological

Nglish: Translation of pathological for Spanish Speakers


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