Ability Drain

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Condition Severity: Strong

   Something has permanently culled a portion of your fundamental competence from your very soul.


  • Diseases, poisons, spells, and other abilities can sometimes permanently drain your ability scores. This drain does not actually reduce an ability, but it does apply a penalty upon the affected creature, depending on the ability score which is drained.
  • For every point of drain you take to a single ability, you suffer the following effects, based on the ability which is drained:
  • Strength: -2 points of damage dealt with all attacks (including spells, ranged, etc).
  • Dexterity: -1 to AC.
  • Constitution: -5 to your maximum hit points. If your current hit points exceed your new maximum, they are reduced to the new maximum amount by this effect.
  • Intelligence: -2 to all skill checks and combat maneuvers (including non-INT-based skills).
  • Wisdom: -2 from all instantaneous healing received.
  • Charisma: -1 to the save DC of any abilities you use.
  • The penalties above are cumulative for each point of ability drain inflicted, though no ability score may ever be reduced below 1.

Ended By

If the ability, trap, or effect description includes specific directions for how the condition is ended, then that is the primary means of ending this condition. In many cases, it is the only way to end the condition. If nothing is specifically listed for ending the condition, then the following methods can be used to end it, instead:

  • Unless otherwise stated by the spell, ability, or effect which inflicted it, ability drain will not heal on its own. It can only be healed through the use of Lesser Restoration, Restoration, or Greater Restoration, or through the use of comparable abilities, spells, or effects which specifically state they can be used to cure ability drain.
  • Unlike most status conditions, Ability Drain persists even if a creature is killed. Even after being raised from the dead (or resurrected, etc.), the creature comes back with the Ability Drain still in place, and must still cure it separately.


Ability DilutionAbility DamageAbility Drain