AskDefine | Define allopathy

Dictionary Definition

allopathy n : the usual method of treating disease with remedies that produce effects differing from those produced by the disease itself [ant: homeopathy]

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. traditional medicine
  2. a traditional medical method or treatment.

Derived terms

rel-top terms derived from allopathy

Usage notes

  • Used principally to distinguish it from homeopathy (USA, UK, EU), especially in the literature of homeopathy (widely considered a pejorative).
  • In the United States, the term is sometimes used to distinguish MDs from DOs (osteopathic physicians), usually in discussions of medical education.
  • In India, used principally to distinguish "Western medicine" from Ayurveda, especially when comparing treatments and drugs.

Extensive Definition

Allopathic medicine and allopathy (from Greek ἄλλος, állos, other, different + πάϑος, páthos, suffering) are terms coined by Samuel Hahnemann, the founder of homeopathy. Originally intended as a characterization of standard medicine in the early 19th century, these terms were rejected by mainstream physicians and quickly acquired negative undertones. In the United States the term "allopathic" has been used in contexts not related to homeopathy, but it has never been accepted by the medical establishment, and is not a label that such individuals apply to themselves.
In the United States, allopathic medicine can sometimes refer to the medical training that leads to the degree Doctor of Medicine rather than the degree Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine. See comparison of MD and DO in the United States.
Outside the United States, allopathic medicine generally refers to "the broad category of medical practice that is sometimes called Western medicine, biomedicine, scientific medicine, or modern medicine." See medicine.
Allopathic medicine or allopathy may also refer to:


allopathy in German: Allopathie
allopathy in Spanish: Alopatía
allopathy in French: Allopathie
allopathy in Italian: Allopatia
allopathy in Dutch: Allopathie
allopathy in Japanese: 対症療法
allopathy in Polish: Alopatia
allopathy in Portuguese: Alopatia
allopathy in Romanian: Alopatie
allopathy in Russian: Аллопатия
allopathy in Slovak: Alopatia
allopathy in Urdu: معالجۂ اخلافیہ
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