1570s, "to bring back to a former condition after decay or damage," back-formation from rehabilitation and in part from Medieval Latin rehabilitatus, past participle of rehabilitare. Meaning "to restore one's reputation or character in the eyes of others" is from 1847. Related: Rehabilitated; rehabilitating.
rehabilitate re·ha·bil·i·tate (rē'hə-bĭl'ĭ-tāt')
v. re·ha·bil·i·tat·ed, re·ha·bil·i·tat·ing, re·ha·bil·i·tates
To restore to good health or useful life, as through therapy and education.
To restore to good condition, operation, or capacity.