loss of appetite and inability to eat.
Psychiatry. anorexia nervosa.

1590–1600; < Neo-Latin < Greek, equivalent to an- an-1 + órex(is) longing (oreg- reach after + -sis -sis) + -ia -ia Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
anorexia (ˌænɒˈrɛksɪə)
1.  loss of appetite
2.  Also called: anorexia nervosa a disorder characterized by fear of becoming fat and refusal of food, leading to debility and even death
[C17: via New Latin from Greek, from an- + orexis appetite]
adj, —n
adj, —n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

1590s, "lack of appetite," from Gk. anorexia, from an-, privative prefix, "without" + orexis "appetite, desire," from oregein "to desire, stretch out" (cognate with L. regere "to keep straight, guide, rule;" see regal).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

anorexia an·o·rex·i·a (ān'ə-rěk'sē-ə)
Loss of appetite, especially as a result of disease.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
anorexia   (ān'ə-rěk'sē-ə)  Pronunciation Key 
  1. Loss of appetite, especially as a result of disease.

  2. Anorexia nervosa.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

anorexia definition

A short name for anorexia nervosa.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Britannica


persistent lack of appetite not caused by repletion. It may spring from psychoneurotic causes, as in anorexia nervosa (q.v.), a lack of appetite, primarily in young women, that may lead to extreme emaciation and even to death. Anorexia, like nausea and vomiting, may be brought about by shock, pain, or an inadequate supply of oxygen to a centre in the medulla oblongata (the part of the brain immediately above the spinal cord). An increase in pressure within the skull may cause anorexia, nausea, or vomiting, as may infections in the mouth or badly fitting dentures. Obstruction at some point in the gastrointestinal system, chronic disease of the kidneys, liver disease, allergic reactions to foods, and the taking of certain drugs (e.g., amphetamines) are among the many other causes of the disorder.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
And yet many companies seem to have become so hooked on cost-cutting that a sort of anorexia has set in.
There have been several highly publicized cases of anorexia and bulimia among jumpers and apparently even a self-referential song.
Symptoms included anorexia, lethargy, pallor and nasal hemorrhaging.
Anorexia may occur early in the disease or later, if the cancer grows or spreads.
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