re·​in·​fec·​tion | \ ˌrē-in-ˈfek-shən How to pronounce reinfection (audio) \

Definition of reinfection

: infection following recovery from or superimposed on infection of the same type

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Other Words from reinfection

reinfect \ ˌrē-​in-​ˈfekt How to pronounce reinfect (audio) \ transitive verb

Examples of reinfection in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web There are also concerns that if reinfection is possible, symptoms could actually be worse than the first time. John Talty |, al, "Fact or Fiction: Do Clemson, LSU have an edge from summer COVID-19 outbreak?," 25 June 2020 So far, for cases of what appear to be long-lasting symptoms, reinfection seems not to be the explanation. Lois Parshley, National Geographic, "How long does the coronavirus last inside the body?," 3 June 2020 If antibodies targeting a particular virus turn up in a blood sample, their appearance provides confirmation of an immune response that may protect against reinfection. Esther Landhuis, Scientific American, "COVID-19 Vaccine Developers Search for Antibodies That ‘First Do No Harm’," 28 May 2020 These passes would let people move around and return to work—based on the assumption that possession of such antibodies prevents reinfection. The Economist, "Covid-19 Leaving lockdown means understanding immune responses to the virus," 2 May 2020 Those two processes together may help a person recover and prevent reinfection. Kaiser Health News, oregonlive, "Can you trust results of new coronavirus antibody tests?," 28 Apr. 2020 Another is how long people who’ve recovered have immunity; reinfection after months or years is common with other human coronaviruses. Patrick Henry / Bloomberg, Time, "WHO: 'No Evidence' That COVID-19 Antibodies Protect From Potential Re-infection," 25 Apr. 2020 Measles antibodies, for example, offer lifetime protection against reinfection. Erin Allday,, "Antibody tests reveal coronavirus spread, but not yet immunity," 21 Apr. 2020 Long ago, the Chinese recognized that people who had contracted smallpox once were immune to reinfection. Jeffrey Kluger, Time, "A Vaccine Against COVID-19 Would Be the Latest Success in a Long Scientific History," 15 May 2020

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

1661, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for reinfection

Time Traveler

The first known use of reinfection was in 1661

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Statistics for reinfection

Last Updated

28 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Reinfection.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for reinfection


re·​in·​fec·​tion | \ ˌrē-in-ˈfek-shən How to pronounce reinfection (audio) \

Medical Definition of reinfection

: infection following recovery from or superimposed on a previous infection of the same type rescreening aimed at detecting reinfection following treatment— Diana Mahoney

Other Words from reinfection

reinfect \ -​ˈfekt How to pronounce reinfect (audio) \ transitive verb

More from Merriam-Webster on reinfection

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with reinfection

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