symp·​tom·​at·​ic | \ˌsim(p)-tə-ˈma-tik \

Definition of symptomatic 

1a : being a symptom of a disease

b : having the characteristics of a particular disease but arising from another cause symptomatic epilepsy resulting from brain damage

2 : concerned with, affecting, or having symptoms symptomatic treatment a symptomatic patient

3 : characteristic, indicative his behavior was symptomatic of his character

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Other Words from symptomatic

symptomatically \ ˌsim(p)-​tə-​ˈma-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb

Examples of symptomatic in a Sentence

a fever's refusal to respond to antibiotics is symptomatic of a viral infection

Recent Examples on the Web

Children being put into cages is terrible, and it’s indicative and symptomatic of a much larger problem. Emily Dreyfuss, WIRED, "'ICE Is Everywhere': Using Library Science to Map the Separation Crisis," 25 June 2018 The second group is children who don't outgrow the disorder and are still symptomatic but lose enough characteristics that they can't be officially diagnosed. Michelle Watson, CNN, "Millions of kids on ADHD meds decide their treatment as adults," 6 June 2018 The degree to which there appear to be changing priorities is symptomatic of having revolving leadership. Michael Cooper, New York Times, "Turmoil at Lincoln Center: Infighting, Money Troubles, Scrapped Projects," 1 July 2018 Jorge Valdano, who scored in the final when Argentina won the World Cup in 1986, told the Guardian how Messi's troubles were symptomatic of muddled thinking from top to bottom. Thomas Allnutt,, "Messi delivers as Argentina scrape through to World Cup's last 16," 26 June 2018 Within hours of Lands’ End supplying the new outfits to 64,000 employees, reports of symptomatic reactions began circulating on social media, Promo Marketing magazine reported. Fox News, "Delta's $20 million uniforms causing 'chafing,' 'irritation,' some employees claim," 7 June 2018 Since then, congressional investigations have only revealed symptomatic details that largely serve to confuse the event further., "Ronaldo's 1998 Seizure & World Cup Final Appearance Remains One of Football's Greatest Mysteries," 1 June 2018 There have been 5,700 symptomatic cases of Zika since 2015 in U.S. states and 37,229 in U.S. territories, namely Puerto Rico, between 2015 and the beginning of May, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Betsy Mckay, WSJ, "Risk of Zika Infection From Blood Transfusion Is Low, New Study Says," 9 May 2018 However, these choices only offer symptomatic relief of the pain and discomfort associated with the tissue damage., "Optimum Performance: PRP - A non-surgical option for mild joint trauma," 4 May 2018

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

1698, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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The first known use of symptomatic was in 1698

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English Language Learners Definition of symptomatic

medical : showing that a particular disease is present

: relating to or showing symptoms of a disease

: showing the existence of a particular problem


symp·​tom·​at·​ic | \ˌsim(p)-tə-ˈmat-ik \

Medical Definition of symptomatic 

1a : being a symptom of a disease gummas symptomatic of syphilis

b : having the characteristics of a particular disease but arising from another cause symptomatic epilepsy resulting from brain damage

2 : concerned with or affecting symptoms symptomatic treatment

3 : having symptoms a symptomatic patient

Other Words from symptomatic

symptomatically \ -​i-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb

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Comments on symptomatic

What made you want to look up symptomatic? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


playful or foolish behavior

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