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For the Swedish entomologist, inventor of the Malaise trap, see René Malaise.
Classification and external resources
ICD-10 R53
ICD-9-CM 780.7
MedlinePlus 003089
eMedicine topic list

Malaise (/məˈlz/ muh-LAZE) is a feeling of general discomfort, uneasiness or pain, often the first indication 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; for example, "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.[3] 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.


Malaise is a non-specific symptom and can present in the slightest ailment, such as an emotion (causing fainting, a vasovagal response) or hunger (light hypoglycemia[4]), 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.

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^
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  3. ^ 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.
  4. ^

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