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[L. compensatio, a counterbalance]
1. The restoration of a normal physiological state by one organ when another is malfunctioning. For example, in metabolic acidosis, hyperventilation reduces the partial pressure of carbon dioxide in the body to elevate the pH back toward a normal level.
2. In psychology and psychiatry, the defense mechanism in which a person who feels inadequate, e.g., because of neuroses, character defects, or a physical disability, makes up for this perception by stressing or using other personal strengths and assets. Sublimation is often similar but differs by substituting a higher social goal to gratify the infrasocial drive by replacement rather than by only camouflaging.
3. Restitution by payment to a person injured, e.g., in the workplace.
4. Wages, fee, or salary for work done or services rendered.