Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Tending to alter or produce alteration.
  • adj. Tending to restore to normal health.
  • n. A treatment or medication that restores health.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Causing ateration.
  • n. A medicine or treatment which gradually induces a change, and restores healthy functions without sensible evacuations.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Causing alteration; having the power or tendency to alter; especially, in medicine, having the power to restore the healthy functions of the body.
  • n. One of a group of medicines the physiological action of which is somewhat obscure, but which seem to modify the processes of growth and repair in the various tissues. The most important are the compounds of mercury, iodine, and arsenic.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. tending to cure or restore to health

Etymologies

From Latin alterativum, noun use of alterativus. (Wiktionary)

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