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

  • adj. Of, relating to, or characterized by spasms: a spastic colon; a spastic form of cerebral palsy.
  • adj. Affected by spastic paralysis.
  • adj. Offensive Slang Clumsy or inept.
  • n. A person affected with spastic paralysis.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of, relating to, or affected by spasm.
  • adj. Of or relating to spastic paralysis.
  • adj. Clumsy.
  • adj. Hyperactive, excited, and acting in a random manner.
  • n. A person affected by spastic paralysis or spastic cerebral palsy.
  • n. A stupid, clumsy person.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to spasm; spasmodic; especially, pertaining to tonic spasm; tetanic.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In medicine, pertaining or relating to spasm; spasmodic: as, spastic contractions; spastic remedies.
  • In zoology, convulsive, as an infusorian; of or pertaining to the Spastica.

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

  • adj. affected by involuntary jerky muscular contractions; resembling a spasm
  • adj. relating to or characterized by spasm
  • n. a person suffering from spastic paralysis
  • adj. suffering from spastic paralysis


Latin spasticus, from Greek spastikos, from spān, to pull.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin spasticus, from Ancient Greek σπαστικός (spastikos, "drawing in"). Confer French spastique and see also spasm. (Wiktionary)


  • Yeah, spastic, is a word that they have been trying to phaze out is generally linked with people that have mental conditions.

    EXTRALIFE – By Scott Johnson - The Final Score #02: “No More Moore”

  • The word spastic is used differently depending on location which has led to some controversy and misunderstanding.

    SYNCHRONIZED SPAZ ATTACK - Lolcats 'n' Funny Pictures of Cats - I Can Has Cheezburger?

  • His current project is to claim back the word spastic, "in the same way black people and gay and lesbian people have reclaimed negative language that was used about them".


  • In India the word spastic is used without negative connotations, with The Spastics Society of India being India’s most noted non-profit and a non-governmental organization NGO, working for Neuro-Muscular and Developmental Disabilities.

    SYNCHRONIZED SPAZ ATTACK - Lolcats 'n' Funny Pictures of Cats - I Can Has Cheezburger?

  • Why Robert Bresson didn't keep the pathetic Jerry Lewis wannabe from staggering around like a spastic is a mystery that may never be solved.

    Cut me a big slice of that ham acting.

  • And more than that, Miles, it does really offend those people who are disabled and who have cerebral palsy, because it refers to their very serious condition, and being spastic, which is a very serious form and a reaction to having the cerebral palsy.

    CNN Transcript Apr 13, 2006

  • I said this already but was called a spastic (something the mod's didn't give a warning for). News

  • The child suffers from a form of cerebral palsy known as spastic quadriplegia, according to Barnes, who argued to jurors during opening statements Monday that midwife and nurse Fatima Arefian of Gaithersburg, Md., and Dr. Cameron Darvish of Paterson, did not act quickly enough in ordering and completing the C-section.

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  • It was to get this kind of spastic balletic violence.

    Fresh Air Remembers 'Bonnie And Clyde' Director

  • So the intention there was to get this kind of spastic motion of genuine violence, at the same time, the attenuation of time that one experiences when you see something like a terrible automobile accident or, in my case, certain occurrences in the war.

    Fresh Air Remembers 'Bonnie And Clyde' Director


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