From Wikipedia the free encyclopedia

Other namesdiscomfort, uneasiness
SpecialtyFamily medicine, Psychiatry, Clinical psychology
Symptomsfeeling of uneasiness or discomfort.
Diagnostic methodbased on symptoms
Differential diagnosispain, anxiety, depression

Malaise is a feeling of general discomfort, uneasiness, or pain, often the first sign of an infection or other disease.[1][2] The word has existed in the French language since at least the 12th century.

The term is also often used figuratively in other contexts.


Malaise is a non-specific symptom and can be present in the slightest ailment, such as an emotion (causing fainting, a vasovagal response) or hunger (light hypoglycemia[3]), to the most serious conditions (cancer, stroke, heart attack, internal bleeding, etc.).

Malaise expresses a patient's uneasiness that "something is not right" that may need a medical examination to determine the significance.

Malaise is thought to be caused by the activation of an immune response, and the associated pro-inflammatory cytokines.[4]

Figurative use[edit]

"Economic malaise" refers to an economy that is stagnant or in recession (compare depression). The term is particularly associated with the US 1973–75 recession.[5] A speech made by President Jimmy Carter in 1979 is commonly referred to as the "malaise" speech, although the term was not in the speech.[6]

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Malaise: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia". Archived from the original on 2016-09-16.
  2. ^ "Well". Archived from the original on 2018-04-24 – via
  3. ^ Sommerfield, Andrew J.; Deary, Ian J.; McAulay, Vincent; Frier, Brian M. (1 February 2003). "Short-Term, Delayed, and Working Memory Are Impaired During Hypoglycemia in Individuals With Type 1 Diabetes". Diabetes Care. 26 (2): 390–396. doi:10.2337/diacare.26.2.390. PMID 12547868. Archived from the original on 13 September 2016 – via
  4. ^ Dantzer, Robert (1 December 2016). "Cytokine, Sickness Behavior, and Depression". Immunology and allergy clinics of North America. 29 (2): 247–264. doi:10.1016/j.iac.2009.02.002. ISSN 0889-8561. PMC 2740752. PMID 19389580.
  5. ^ One example can be found in The Next 200 Years: A Scenario for America and the World, by Herman Kahn et al., published in 1976, p. 2.
  6. ^ ""Crisis of Confidence" Speech (July 15, 1979)". Miller Center, University of Virginia. Archived from the original (text and video) on July 21, 2009.

External links[edit]

External resources