Definition of degenerative in US English:

degenerative

adjective

  • 1(of a disease or symptom) characterized by progressive, often irreversible deterioration, and loss of function in the organs or tissues.

    ‘degenerative diseases’
    • ‘Loss of the meniscal cartilage can lead to degenerative arthritis.’
    • ‘He had symptoms of degenerative arthritis but did not have evidence of joint effusions.’
    • ‘The scan showed areas of increased uptake in the lower spine, felt to be due to degenerative joint disease.’
    • ‘One woman went to an orthopedist for painful degenerative arthritis in her knee.’
    • ‘This damage impairs the immune system, leading to infections, cancer, or degenerative diseases such as heart disease.’
    • ‘Almost 80 percent of persons over age 70 have degenerative joint disease.’
    • ‘For Alzheimer's sufferers, the medical care is personal care, since it is an incurable degenerative disease.’
    • ‘The embryonic stem cells could then be used in transplantation therapy in patients with degenerative diseases of other tissues.’
    • ‘This pain suggests a new disease burden of degenerative musculoskeletal disorders in future adults.’
    • ‘Osteoarthritis is a form of degenerative arthritis that affects bone joints and develops slowly with age.’
    • ‘It is also called degenerative arthritis or wear-and-tear arthritis.’
    • ‘She had a particular interest in multiple sclerosis and in other chronic degenerative diseases of the nervous system.’
    • ‘One patient suffered from extensive dental loss and degenerative arthritis of the spine.’
    • ‘Past history reveals degenerative arthritis, chronic neck and back pain.’
    • ‘For example, in our cohort, one subject was blind and another had a degenerative neuromuscular disease.’
    • ‘Ataxia telangiectasia is a progressive degenerative disease that involves a large number of major body systems.’
    • ‘Infectious diseases rather than chronic degenerative diseases were the order of the day, and the majority of the population lived in poverty and squalor.’
    • ‘We have sympathy for people who are ill; people with tumours and heart disease and degenerative illnesses.’
    • ‘Creutzfeldt Jakob disease is a degenerative neurological disease with a long incubation period.’
    • ‘Alzheimer's is a progressive degenerative illness that damages brain cells and affects around 35000 people in Ireland.’
    emaciated, atrophied, withered, shrivelled, weak, weakened, frail, shrunken, skeletal, rickety, scrawny, cadaverous, wilted, faded, flagging, deteriorating
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Of or tending to decline and deterioration.
      ‘the young generation had fallen into a degenerative backslide’
      • ‘What we see speaks volumes on our degenerative state of affairs.’
      • ‘This is a degenerative situation and once started, the dominoes start falling and the entire defensive infrastructure collapses.’
      • ‘I think the terms ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’ are simply degenerative.’

Pronunciation

degenerative

/dəˈdʒɛnərədɪv//dəˈjenərədiv/