Dysfunction vs Disfunction

Discussion in 'English Only' started by DrLucy, Jun 29, 2009.

  1. DrLucy New Member

    Rosario, Argentina
    Argentina, Español
    Hello people.. I would like to know if there's any difference regarding the usage of these two words, or in meaning. For what I've found, they both mean the same.
    Thanks, Lucy.
  2. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    Merriam-Webster lists "disfunction" as a variant of "dysfunction". I would expect to see it with the "dys" prefix. "Disfunction" looks odd to me. Perhaps it's not used much in American English.
  3. DrLucy New Member

    Rosario, Argentina
    Argentina, Español
    Yes, I read the same. I just thought may be there was a difference. Thanks a lot James.
  4. Forero Senior Member

    Houston, Texas, USA
    USA English
    dys- is a Greek prefix meaning "bad", "abnormal", "difficult", or "impaired".
    dis- is a Latin prefix with none of the above meanings.

    dys- has the right meaning, but function is a Latin word. Hence the confusion.

    P.S. Merriam-Webster has this under "dis- prefix": "5 [by folk etymology]: DYS- <disfunction>".
  5. DrLucy New Member

    Rosario, Argentina
    Argentina, Español
    That's what I was looking for.. thank you very much Forero.
  6. natkretep

    natkretep Moderato con anima (English Only)

    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    Not in British English either. I've never seen disfunction.
  7. LeeAngelo102 New Member

    Filipino - English
    Disfunction - impairment of function or malfunctioning, as of an organ or structure of the body.
    Dysfunction - the condition of having poor and unhealthy behaviors and attitudes within a group of people.
  8. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    I'm afraid not, LeeAngelo102. For example:

    Liver Dysfunction: Common Symptoms | Naturopath Connect
    You may have liver dysfunction if you are experiencing any of these symptoms:

    Pathophysiology and therapy of cardiac dysfunction in Duchenne muscular dystrophy. - PubMed - NCBI
    Cardiac dysfunction is a frequent manifestation of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and a common cause of death for individuals with this condition. Early diastolic dysfunction and focal fibrosis proceed to dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), complicated by heart failure and arrhythmia in most patients.

    brain dysfunction - Google Search
    Damage to these networks can cause aphasia, apraxia, agnosia, or amnesia. Usually, doctors can diagnose the type of dysfunction by examining the person.
  9. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Welcome. I wonder where you found those definitions. The google book database shows the phrase "liver dysfunction" to be about 1500 times more common in print than "liver disfunction" - although there are some examples of disfunction, they are very rare:(
  10. LeeAngelo102 New Member

    Filipino - English
    That's what I thought, haha!
    Thank you!

Share This Page