Definition of complicate in US English:

complicate

verb

[with object]
  • 1Make (something) more difficult or confusing by causing it to be more complex.

    ‘a complicating factor’
    ‘middlemen can complicate the process’
    • ‘Expecting your sons to exchange properties is unnecessarily complicating the issue.’
    • ‘Additionally, the ability to detect this signature at a genomic level in the human lineage is complicated by other factors.’
    • ‘Trends in the number of patients colonised on admission may also complicate interpretation of outcomes.’
    • ‘He needs a friend, not a girlfriend who will just complicate what's really important.’
    • ‘Other factors can also complicate the interpretation of estimates of percentage change.’
    • ‘The constant shift in mental posture greatly complicates things for the average soldier.’
    • ‘The assessment of quality of life in adolescents with asthma was complicated by several factors.’
    • ‘Why should my job be unnecessarily complicated by students with problems I can't solve?’
    • ‘One of the factors complicating the adjustment of the Hmong people has been English language acquisition.’
    • ‘The relationship is complicated by the presence of heterochromatin.’
    • ‘The first factor complicating the fight against doping, he said, is the imperfect art of testing.’
    • ‘Today the situation is complicated by the fact that there's just so much out there.’
    • ‘There are wide-ranging social and economic factors which complicate things.’
    • ‘Proper land ownership documentation is another matter that is complicating the struggle.’
    • ‘Further complicating matters are factors such as range-wide variability in habitat conditions that can affect survival.’
    • ‘Sometimes I feel we try to complicate what's actually very simple.’
    • ‘Any potential sale has been complicated by the presence of bats, a protected species.’
    • ‘Local factors complicated identities and made remoteness from the centre an unreliable guide to political complexion.’
    • ‘There are a number of factors which complicate choices about smallpox either for governments or for individuals.’
    • ‘As I can see it, there are two factors that start to complicate the game, somewhat affecting its gameplay.’
    make difficult, make more difficult, make complex, make complicated, mix up
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Medicine Introduce complications in (an existing condition)
      ‘smoking may complicate pregnancy’
      • ‘Women with preterm delivery and pregnancies complicated by hemoglobinopathies, hypertension, or multiple gestation were excluded.’
      • ‘More frequent visits will be necessary for patients with stage 2 hypertension or with complicating comorbid conditions.’
      • ‘Respiratory failure frequently complicates the condition of children who have sustained traumatic injury.’
      • ‘Stroke may be complicated by several conditions that can alter outcome adversely.’
      • ‘Pregnancy is not an absolute contraindication to travel unless complicated by an unstable medical condition or impending labor.’

Origin

Early 17th century (in the sense ‘combine, entangle, intertwine’): from Latin complicat- ‘folded together’, from the verb complicare, from com- ‘together’ + plicare ‘to fold’.

Pronunciation

complicate

/ˈkämpləˌkāt//ˈkɑmpləˌkeɪt/