Definition of topical in English:

topical

adjective

  • 1(of a subject) of immediate relevance, interest, or importance owing to its relation to current events.

    ‘a popular topical affairs programme’
    • ‘The flagship daily news and current affairs programme Kildare Today will deal with topical issues and provide a forum for listeners to air their views.’
    • ‘School can help prepare children for this adult world, by encouraging them to discuss social and political affairs, and introducing topical issues during lessons.’
    • ‘She will focus on exploring topical issues ranging from social and personal ones to world politics.’
    • ‘Of course it's only topical to current events in my and my family's life but I believe you should take these things one step at a time.’
    • ‘Should it end the practice of open questioning of ministers on topical issues?’
    • ‘You can get latest news, comment pieces on topical issues, a list of events, and lots of statistics on the region.’
    • ‘So you could see that they really wanted to focus these things on topical issues and really drill them home.’
    • ‘This new programme will deal with topical issues and news stories of the day and provide a platform for listeners' views.’
    • ‘They usually have a few guests and discuss topical issues, usually of interest to men.’
    • ‘To make the event more meaningful, seminars on topical interest have also been scheduled.’
    • ‘As contributions to this section, the Editors welcome comment and debate on topical issues or on recent articles or reviews appearing in the journal.’
    • ‘He is a frequent contributor to leading newspapers on subjects of topical interest.’
    • ‘The key problem is that the burden of proof, or demand for evidence, may vary according to a policy's perceived fit with the prevailing collective world views about issues of popular topical interest.’
    • ‘It deals with a very topical subject, Anglo-American relations, set at a time during the American War of Independence.’
    • ‘Other topical issues got the panel debating the grey areas of liberalism, such as the contradictions in banning fox hunting and smoking in public places.’
    • ‘Our programming is about subjects that are topical and relevant to us in our current lives.’
    • ‘Official spokespeople were initially hostile, but have now taken the smart public relations step of cautiously complimenting the duo for raising topical issues.’
    • ‘That requires programmes which are topical, engaging and relevant, as the best of current affairs has always been.’
    • ‘The suffering of humanity in war, a very topical issue at the moment, is the theme of one of the books chosen by Castlebar Book club for April.’
    • ‘About 250 students from Yorkshire and Lincolnshire are expected to attend the December 14 event, which will cover a number of topical issues.’
    current, up to date, up to the minute, contemporary, recent
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Relating to a particular subject; classified according to subject.
      ‘foreign or topical stamps’
      • ‘It's very easy to find your way around, and there are topical menus on every page, leading you to categories such as Beyond Buddies, Head and Heart, and Out of Bounds.’
      • ‘A table at the end of the book also classifies documents into a number of topical categories.’
      • ‘The book has a brand new topical thematic arrangement designed to better your spiritual growth.’
      • ‘Another issue of topical farming interest that may be aired at the show will be the cross-compliance - environment and welfare - part of the CAP reform package.’
      • ‘Or you can invent topical categories - love letters, crank letters, letters to the editor.’
      • ‘Temporary special exhibitions are dedicated to individual artists, or to topical themes in the fields of art, architecture, and modern design.’
      • ‘Each of the larger sections is divided into several topical categories.’
      • ‘Japanese gardens were my introduction to Asian garden style and make up the bulk of my topical collection.’
      • ‘In addition, articles were coded according to topical descriptors, based on a modified list.’
  • 2Medicine
    Relating or applied directly to a part of the body.

    ‘topical steroid creams’
    • ‘In addition, otitis from all of these diseases, excluding acne, will respond to low-dose therapy with topical steroid solutions.’
    • ‘A physician had prescribed a topical steroid cream for this eruption three months ago with initial improvement in the rash.’
    • ‘If 50 percent or more of the scalp is involved, treatment options include topical immunotherapy, systemic steroids or phototherapy.’
    • ‘Unlike existing treatments for the condition, MED2002 is a topical treatment that is designed to be safe for patients with heart problems.’
    • ‘Products can be classified as topical antibiotics, biologic dressings, and nonbiologic dressings.’
    • ‘Sunscreen is topical preparation designed to protect the skin from the effects of ultraviolet light.’
    • ‘A special herbal topical medication was exclusively designed by experts in our institution.’
    • ‘He had been prescribed potent topical steroids, Fucidin cream, and oral amoxycillin, but none had been effective.’
    • ‘You would take systemic remedies by mouth and they work on the whole body while topical remedies are applied directly to the area affected, such as a nasal spay for a blocked nose.’
    • ‘Severe itch may be reduced by modifying inflammation with topical steroids or by using phototherapy or photochemotherapy.’
    • ‘The FDA published this TFM on the testing and classification of topical antimicrobials.’
    • ‘Intralesional bleomycin, topical immunotherapy, photodynamic therapy, and pulsed dye laser treatment are best confined to research centres or resistant cases.’
    • ‘Pemphigus vulgaris, once a lethal skin disease, is now commonly treated with systemic steroids and topical treatment for skin lesions.’
    • ‘Treatment of basal cell carcinoma includes different forms of surgery, radiotherapy, photodynamic therapy, topical fluorouracil, and imiquimod’
    • ‘Side effects of topical otic fluoroquinolones are rare.’
    • ‘In patients with severe discomfort secondary to vulvitis, the combination of a low-potency steroid cream and a topical antifungal cream may be beneficial.’
    • ‘A prescription for hydroxyzine and a topical steroid cream ended the house call but not my children's fascination with the stranger who came to our home.’
    • ‘Further treatment with a combination cream that included topical steroid, antibiotic, and nystatin was also ineffective.’
    • ‘Your dentist or dental hygienist can apply topical fluorides during dental visits.’
    • ‘A topical steroid cream will help relieve itching and swelling.’

Origin

Late 16th century: from Greek topikos + -al. Early use was as a term in logic and rhetoric describing a rule or argument as ‘applicable in most but not all cases’.

Pronunciation

topical

/ˈtɒpɪk(ə)l/