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What Is Malaise?

Symptom Associated With Many Chronic Diseases and Conditions


Updated June 27, 2014

Malaise Defined

Malaise (pronounced muh-laze) has been described as a:

  • general ill feeling
  • ill-at-ease feeling
  • general feeling of discomfort, illness, or lack of well-being

Determining the Cause of Malaise

Medical conditions or side effects of drugs can cause malaise. By assessing other symptoms which are present with malaise, it is easier to determine the true cause of malaise. For example, the likely cause of malaise for arthritis patients is joint pain and other joint symptoms.

Symptoms which are similar to malaise, but not the same, include:

  • fatigue
  • lack of energy
  • aches
  • sleepiness
  • drowsiness
  • weakness

Diseases Associated With Malaise

Malaise is a non-specific symptom associated with nearly all infectious, metabolic, or systemic diseases. Depending on the disease, malaise can develop slowly or quickly. With many diseases, malaise is often accompanied by fatigue.

Among the diseases which are known to cause malaise are:

Experiencing Malaise? Call Your Doctor

You should consult your doctor about malaise if you have other symptoms which also point to illness or if malaise has persisted for one week or more with or without any other symptoms. Your doctor will take your medical history, give you a physical examination, and order diagnostic tests if needed. Getting appropriate treatment for your condition may help with malaise.


Malaise. MedlinePlus. 1/18/2007.

Malaise. WrongDiagnosis.com. 2/24/2006.

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