atrophy

[a-truh-fee]
noun
1.
Also, atrophia [uh-troh-fee-uh] . Pathology. a wasting away of the body or of an organ or part, as from defective nutrition or nerve damage.
2.
degeneration, decline, or decrease, as from disuse: He argued that there was a progressive atrophy of freedom and independence of thought.
verb (used with object), verb (used without object), atrophied, atrophying.
3.
to affect with or undergo atrophy.

Origin:
1590–1600; earlier atrophie (< Middle French) < Late Latin atrophia < Greek, equivalent to átroph(os) not fed (see a-6, tropho-) + -ia -ia

atrophic [uh-trof-ik, uh-troh-fik] , adjective
nonatrophic, adjective
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
atrophy (ˈætrəfɪ)
 
n , pl -phies
1.  a wasting away of an organ or part, or a failure to grow to normal size as the result of disease, faulty nutrition, etc
2.  any degeneration or diminution, esp through lack of use
 
vb , -phies, -phies, -phying, -phied
3.  to waste away or cause to waste away
 
[C17: from Late Latin atrophia, from Greek, from atrophos ill-fed, from a-1 + -trophos from trephein to feed]
 
atrophic
 
adj

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

atrophy
"wasting away through lack of nourishment," 1590s (implied in atrophied), from Fr. atrophie, from L.L. atrophia, from Gk. atrophia "a wasting away," noun of state from atrophos "ill-fed, un-nourished," from a- "not" + trophe "nourishment," from trephein "to fatten." Atrophic is recorded from 1865.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

atrophy at·ro·phy (āt'rə-fē)
n.
A wasting or decrease in the size of an organ or tissue, as from death and reabsorption of cells, diminished cellular proliferation, pressure, ischemia, malnutrition, decreased function, or hormonal changes. Also called atrophia. v. at·ro·phied, at·ro·phy·ing, at·ro·phies
To undergo atrophy.


a·troph'ic (ā-trŏf'ĭk) adj.
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
atrophy   (āt'rə-fē)  Pronunciation Key 
A wasting or decrease in the size of an organ or tissue, as from death and reabsorption of cells, diminished proliferation of cells, pressure, lack of oxygen, malnutrition, decreased function, or hormonal changes.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary
atrophy [(at-ruh-fee)]

The wasting away or decrease in size of an organ or tissue in the body. When a body part is affected by paralysis, the muscles may atrophy through lack of use.

Note: The term is also used in a more general way to refer to a wasting process: “Since he stopped playing, his piano skills have atrophied.”
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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Example sentences
It's about time both government and industry realized that people do not need
  to atrophy with age.
According to the other, the synesthetic connections merely atrophy, but can be
  accessed under the right conditions.
The problem with one blinding light shining from Washington is that people's
  own lightmaking skills atrophy.
The researchers reported that using the internet triggers key centers in the
  brain that usually atrophy with age and lack of use.
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