Definition of apraxia in US English:



  • Inability to perform particular purposive actions, as a result of brain damage.

    with modifier ‘dressing apraxia’
    • ‘Dementia is chronic and progressive, and it is characterized by the gradual onset of impaired memory and deficits in two or more areas of cognition, such as anomia, agnosia or apraxia.’
    • ‘Motor dysfunction of the hands often manifests itself as ‘clumsiness’ that mimics cerebral apraxia, rather than as objective weakness.’
    • ‘Inability to execute an intended action is known as apraxia, slowness and difficulty in doing it is dyspraxia.’
    • ‘Yes, it's about dreams (both nightly kind and aspirations - Hollywood) but also about mental incoherence, brain damage, aphasia, apraxia, agnosia.’
    • ‘An example of a test for apraxia is to ask the patient to pantomime the use of a common object such as a hammer or a toothbrush.’


Late 19th century: from German Apraxie, from Greek apraxia ‘inaction’.