relapse

noun
re·​lapse | \ ri-ˈlaps, ˈrē-ˌlaps \

Definition of relapse

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the act or an instance of backsliding, worsening, or subsiding
2 : a recurrence of symptoms of a disease after a period of improvement

relapse

verb
re·​lapse | \ ri-ˈlaps \
relapsed; relapsing

Definition of relapse (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to slip or fall back into a former worse state
2 : sink, subside relapse into deep thought

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Other Words from relapse

Verb

relapser noun

Examples of relapse in a Sentence

Noun

Everyone thought she was well until a sudden relapse sent her back to the hospital. a drug addict who has had a relapse a drug addict who has a history of relapse

Verb

If you don't continue your treatment, you could relapse. Malaria can relapse years after the original infection. The country soon relapsed into chaos. She stayed out of trouble for a long time, but then she relapsed into her old ways.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

She's had a long, difficult history with addiction but had been sober for six years until this latest relapse. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Demi Lovato Shows Fans How She's Fighting for Recovery With a Jiu-Jistsu Selfie," 5 Dec. 2018 Different ways to downsize a genome B. recurrentis causes relapses because its genetic code enables the bacteria to run through a random sequence of different variants of two proteins, called antigens, on its surface. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Ancient DNA reveals the secrets of a devastating European disease," 26 Sep. 2018 Experiencing a small slip or a full-on relapse or simply feeling like sobriety is more challenging than usual doesn't mean that treatment has failed. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "Ahead of the ‘RHONY’ Reunion, Luann de Lesseps Checks Back Into Rehab," 18 July 2018 That includes seeking new ways to thwart potentially deadly relapses. Jennifer Levitz, WSJ, "Koch-Funded Gyms Help Opioid Addicts Recover," 16 Sep. 2018 One tough aspect of this experience is determining how to react if your loved one relapses. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "3 Things Not to Say When a Loved One With Addiction Relapses—and 6 to Try Instead," 20 Oct. 2018 Look at the reaction to Demi Lovato's recent relapse and hospitalization. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "Lady Gaga's 2009 MTV Video Music Awards Performance Was a Warning Pop Culture Needed," 17 Aug. 2018 Cook County Jail detainees discuss their experiences with opioid relapse. John Keilman, chicagotribune.com, "Giving addicted inmates opioid meds behind bars can reduce overdose deaths. Why don't more jails use them?," 6 July 2018 Ben shared the relapse news the way Ben does these things. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: Ex-Avon track star Ben Harmon gives cancer a run for its money," 14 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Luka recently completed a 40-day stay in a house with five other teen boys, meeting regularly with therapists, engaging in group sessions about mindfulness, relapse prevention and other topics. Betsy Mckay, WSJ, "Teen Vaping Has Created Addicts With Few Treatment Options," 18 Dec. 2018 But one disease stands out in historical accounts because authors describe patients appearing to recover before relapsing into fever again and again. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Ancient DNA reveals the secrets of a devastating European disease," 26 Sep. 2018 Eldred, who has severe substance use disorder, spent more than a week in jail after relapsing until her lawyer could find a bed for her at a treatment facility. Alanna Durkin Richer, The Seattle Times, "Court: Drug users can be jailed for relapsing on probation," 16 July 2018 But the father of two relapsed and suffered a fatal overdose in February 2013. NBC News, "NY doctor who prescribed 'Holy Trinity' charged in patient deaths," 7 June 2018 People with an opioid use disorder will often relapse along the road to recovery. Fox News, "Should people with drug addictions be forced into rehab?," 24 June 2018 The trial, called ReBuild, involved 50 patients with relapsing MS. Mary Lou Brink, cleveland.com, "Top Workplaces 2018 nomination deadline extended," 21 Jan. 2018 Among people with opioid addictions, taking an opioid agonist reduces the odds of relapsing into drug use and dying from an overdose. Brian Barnett, STAT, "Jails and prisons: the unmanned front in the battle against the opioid epidemic," 2 July 2018 Another common withdrawal symptom is relapse itself. The Economist, "Welsh prisons are much harsher than England’s on opioid treatment," 12 July 2018

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

circa 1534, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for relapse

Noun

Middle English, from Medieval Latin relapsus, from Latin relabi to slide back, from re- + labi to slide — more at sleep

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Statistics for relapse

Last Updated

21 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for relapse

The first known use of relapse was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for relapse

relapse

noun

English Language Learners Definition of relapse

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the return of an illness after a period of improvement

: a return to bad behavior that you had stopped doing

relapse

verb

English Language Learners Definition of relapse (Entry 2 of 2)

: to become ill again after a period of improvement in health

of an illness : to return or become worse after leaving or improving for a period of time

: to return to a bad condition, form of behavior, etc.

relapse

noun
re·​lapse | \ ri-ˈlaps, ˈrē-ˌlaps\

Kids Definition of relapse

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a return of illness after a period of improvement
2 : a return to a former and undesirable state or condition a relapse into bad habits

relapse

verb
re·​lapse | \ ri-ˈlaps \
relapsed; relapsing

Kids Definition of relapse (Entry 2 of 2)

: to return to a former state or condition (as of illness or bad behavior) after a change for the better

relapse

noun
re·​lapse | \ ri-ˈlaps, ˈrē-ˌ \

Medical Definition of relapse

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a recurrence of illness especially : a recurrence of symptoms of a disease after a period of improvement a relapse after an 18-month remission — M. T. Fosburg et al — compare recrudescence
re·​lapse | \ ri-ˈlaps \
relapsed; relapsing

Medical Definition of relapse (Entry 2 of 2)

: to slip or fall back into a former worse state (as of illness) after a change for the better the patient relapsed twice in four years

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More from Merriam-Webster on relapse

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with relapse

Spanish Central: Translation of relapse

Nglish: Translation of relapse for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of relapse for Arabic Speakers

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