path-, patho-, -path-, -pathia, -pathic, -pathology, -pathetic, -pathize, -pathy

(Greek: feeling, sensation, perception; suffering, disease, or disorder; a system of treating diseases)

In medicine, some of these elements usually mean "someone who suffers from a disease of, or one who treats a disease"; so, they should not be confused with the words that mean "feeling" which are also shown on these pages even though both meanings come from the same Greek element.

hemopathy
An abnormal condition or disease of the blood.
hepatopath
Any disease of the liver.
hepatopathy
Any disease of the liver.
heteropathic
heteropathy
1. Antipathy or aversion excited by suffering; the opposite of sympathy.
2. Hyperesthesia, abnormal sensitivity to stimuli.
3. Also allopathy, a term applied to that system of therapeutics in which diseases are treated by producing a condition incompatible with or antagonistic to the condition to be cured or alleviated.
heteropathy
1. An abnormal sensitivity to stimuli.
2. Antipathy or aversion excited by suffering; opposite of sympathy.
hidropathy
A reference to any disorder or ailment of sweating.
hieropathic
Pertaining to a love of, or strong feeling for, the clergy.
hippopathology
Pertaining to diseases of horses.
histopathology
1. The study of abnormal or diseased tissue or microscopically visible changes in diseased tissue.
2. The study of the structural alteration of cells and tissues caused by disease.
homeopath
homeopathology
homeopathy
A system of medical treatment based on the use of small quantities of remedies that in massive doses produce effects similar to those of the disease being treated.

Homeopathy, historical background

Homeopathy was invented by the German physician Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843) in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. It was both refined and popularized by the American physician James Tyler Kent.

Homeopathy is based on the theory that each naturally occurring element, plant, and mineral compound will, when ingested or applied, result in certain symptoms. Hahnemann believed that, by diluting these substances in a standardized manner, one could reach the true essence of that substance. Hahnemann described this process of dilution as "potentizing" (German: potenziert) the substance. These dilute amounts could then be used to treat the very symptoms they were known to produce.

Hahnemann and his students approached their treatments in a holistic way, meaning that the whole of the body and spirit is dealt with, not just the localised disease. Hahnemann himself spent extended periods of time with his patients, asking them questions that dealt not only with their particular symptoms or illness, but also with the details of their daily lives.

It is also suggested that the gentle approach of homeopathy was a reaction to the violent forms of medicine of the day, which included techniques such as bleeding.

homopathy
The sameness of feeling; sympathy.
hydropathic

Quiz You can find self-scoring quizzes over many of the words in this subject area by going to this Vocabulary Quizzes page.