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[pal-ee-ey-tiv, -ee-uh-tiv] /ˈpæl iˌeɪ tɪv, -i ə tɪv/
serving to palliate.
something that palliates.
Origin of palliative
1535-45; < French palliatif. See palliate, -ive
Related forms
palliatively, adverb
nonpalliative, adjective
nonpalliatively, adverb
unpalliative, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for palliative
  • With no respite care and insufficient palliative care, we suffered on together.
  • Quality-of-life topics, such as pain relief, stress management and palliative care are sensitively treated.
  • It is only when pain and fever are masked by the palliative of aspirin that boils erupt on the human body.
  • This catharsis inspired him to leave his successful career as an oncologist and focus instead on palliative care.
  • Nor is the new tax palliative enough of an answer to the unemployment problem.
  • My fiancee's Mom has entered palliative care as of this past weekend.
  • Like I said in the introduction, it was a palliative beyond prescription.
  • Despite the widespread recognition of these facts, actual measures proposed up to this time have been largely palliative.
  • Since emigration is not a cure but a palliative, some other means of adjusting population to resources must be found.
  • Theirs was the first under a homestead rebate passed as a palliative for the new state income tax.
British Dictionary definitions for palliative


serving to palliate; relieving without curing
something that palliates, such as a sedative drug or agent
Derived Forms
palliatively, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for palliative

early 15c., from Middle French palliatif (14c.) or directly from Medieval Latin palliativus "under cloak, covert," from Late Latin palliatus (see palliate). As a noun, recorded from 1724.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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palliative in Medicine

palliative pal·li·a·tive (pāl'ē-ā'tĭv, -ē-ə-tĭv)
Relieving or soothing the symptoms of a disease or disorder without effecting a cure.

pal'li·a'tive·ly adv.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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