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Alternative forms[edit]


From Ancient Greek ἀναίσθητος (anaísthētos, insensible), from ἀν- (an-, un-) + αἰσθητικός (aisthētikós, perceptible).


  • IPA(key): /ˌænəsˈθɛtɪk/, (nonstandard) /ˌænəsˈtɛtɪk/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɛtɪk


anesthetic (comparative more anesthetic, superlative most anesthetic) (American spelling, Canadian spelling)

  1. Causing anesthesia; reducing pain sensitivity.
  2. Insensate: unable to feel, or unconscious.
    • 1924, Maurice Walter Keatinge, Suggestion in Education:
      (I find that he is analgesic and anaesthetic; evidently he is in a state of passive somnambulism.)
      E. A. Did you feel anybody touch you?
      K. No. There's no one near me. (He continues laughing and talking. [] )
    • 1984, B. R. Hergenhahn, An Introduction to Theories of Personality, Prentice Hall:
      Though physically capable of attaining sex rewards, he is anesthetic; though capable of aggression, he is meek; though capable of affection, he is cold and unresponsive.
    • 2012, H.L. Mencken, Mencken Chrestomathy, Vintage, →ISBN, page 189:
      He is anesthetic to their theological and political enthusiasms. He finds himself an alien at their feasts of soul.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]



anesthetic (plural anesthetics)

  1. (American spelling, medicine) A substance administered to reduce the perception of pain or to induce numbness for surgery and may render the recipient unconscious.
    • 1994, Anesthetics (Ophthalmic) (original version),
      After a local anesthetic is applied to the eye, do not rub or wipe the eye until the anesthetic has worn off and feeling in the eye returns.
    • 2004, David B. Jacoby, R. M. Youngson, Encyclopedia of Family Health, Marshall Cavendish, page 91:
      Modern anesthetics can be divided into several different groups according to how and where they act to reduce pain.
      During premedication, the anesthetist may give a patient drugs that make him or her feel relaxed and drowsy before the actual general anesthetic is administered.



  • "Anesthetics", 2010 MeSH, National Library of Medicine.

Further reading[edit]