TARDIS Index File

List of causes of regeneration

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The causes of regeneration, especially amongst Time Lords, were many and varied. They ran the gamut from simple desire to change, to life-threatening maladies which typically resulted in human death. The following are the known causes of regeneration of specific Time Lords.

The Doctor Edit

Regeneration Reason Story
1 Life force syphoned from him by the planet Mondas, forcing a regeneration from exhaustion and a loss of strength. The Tenth Planet First Doctor regenrates
2 Forced to change his appearance by Time Lord court order as punishment for stealing the TARDIS and breaking the non-interference law, and eventually executed by animated scarecrows. The War Games
The Night Walkers
3 Radiation poisoning upon prolonged exposure to the Great One's highly unstable web of Metebelis crystals. Planet of the Spiders Third-doctor-regenerates
4 Fell to the ground from great height after battling the Master at the Pharos Project. Logopolis Fourth-doctor-regenerating
5 Contracted spectrox toxaemia on Androzani Minor. Resisted the Master's attempt to block his regeneration with the help of his departing incarnation's various companions. The Caves of Androzani Winter FiveRegenerates
6 Injured during an attack on the TARDIS.
Blunt head trauma while suffering from chronon energy starvation after his confrontation with the Lamprey.
Exposure to focused beams of a radiation lethal to Time Lords consequent to the Rani's attack on the TARDIS.
Time and the Rani
Spiral Scratch
The Brink of Death
Sixth regeneration
7 Following a non-fatal shooting, the Doctor was taken to a San Francisco hospital, where subsequent exploratory surgery with a camera accidentally clogged a vein; the anaesthetic he had been given delayed regeneration for several hours. Doctor Who Eighth Doctor after regeneration
8 Died after a ship he was in crash-landed on Karn, but was temporarily resurrected to consume the Sisterhood of Karn's Elixir of Life and control his next regeneration into a "warrior" capable of fighting in the Last Great Time War. The Night of the Doctor Night of the Doctor 4
9 Regenerative process triggered automatically at the conclusion of the Last Great Time War; implied to be the result of old age. The Day of the Doctor War Doctor turns into Eccleston
10 Directly absorbed Time Vortex energy from the Bad Wolf to save the life of Rose Tyler, causing fatal cellular degeneration. The Parting of the Ways Parting of ways regeneration
11 Grazed by the blast from a Dalek gun stick, causing a regeneration. However, the Doctor directed the regenerative energy to his severed hand, and thus aborted a full regeneration, healing the damage he had sustained without needing to actually change. Afterwards, Donna Noble touched the energised hand's container, and an instantaneous biological Meta Crisis was created, allowing the energy to regenerate the entire missing body of the Doctor into the Meta-Crisis Doctor. The Stolen Earth
Journey's End
Tenth meta regen
12 Intentional radiation poisoning incurred in order to save the life of Wilfred Mott. The End of Time Tenth-doctor-regenerates
13 Neared death from old age after exhausting all of his regenerations. Granted a new regeneration cycle by the Time Lords. Initially underwent an explosive "reset" that regressed his current body to a younger state. Later underwent a full regeneration inside the TARDIS. The Time of the Doctor RegenBeginsTOTD

Romana Edit

The Master Edit

Note: Other occasions in which the Master has appropriated a new body, (TV: The Keeper of Traken, Doctor Who, COMIC: The Glorious Dead, AUDIO: Mastermind) are not considered regenerations.

Rassilon Edit

K'anpo Rimpoche Edit

Borusa Edit

Chronotis Edit

  • Salyavin used up his thirteenth and final incarnation when he was attacked by the Sphere. However, when his Type 12 TARDIS was sent backwards, it altered his personal timeline and brought him back to life. (HOMEVID: Shada/WC: Shada)

Ailla Edit

  • Ailla was accidentally shot by Koschei while he was fighting with Imperial forces in the Darkheart; although badly injured and apparently dead (Based on examinations of her assuming that she was only human), she was able to survive in her damaged body until she returned to Koschie's TARDIS and regenerated in the Zero Room (PROSE: The Dark Path)


  • Rallon initiated all twelve of his regenerations at once to force the Celestial Toymaker out of his body; his Watcher subsequently merged with the Toymaker to keep him in check in future, the Doctor noting that this would mean that the Toymaker himself had essentially regenerated as a person. (PROSE: Divided Loyalties)

Roche Edit

  • Lord Roche was caught in a traffic accident while on Earth; he retained enough control over the process after it began to deliberately shape his new appearance so that he was the exact duplicate of the Third Doctor. (PROSE: The Suns of Caresh)

Azmael Edit

  • In his thirteenth and final body, Azmael deliberately regenerated past his limit, killing him and Mestor, who had been attempting to possess Azmael's body after his own was destroyed. (TV: The Twin Dilemma)

Iris Wildthyme Edit

The War Chief Edit

  • The War Chief underwent a faulty regeneration after being shot by War Lords; lack of medical care and the scale of the damage sustained resulted in his new form appearing like two bodies fused together, the damage preventing him from ever regenerating again. (PROSE: Timewyrm: Exodus)

Ruath Edit

  • Ruath drained every drop of her blood from her body to restore Vampire Lord Yarven. Yarven subsequently turned her new incarnation into a vampire. (PROSE: Goth Opera)

Innocet Edit

Glospin Edit

  • Glospin was stated to have regenerated at least twice before the events of his scheme against the Doctor.
  • Glospin force-regenerated himself into the double of the Doctor after acquiring a genetic sample to influence the appearance of his next incarnation (PROSE: Lungbarrow).
  • Having killed Quences in 'disguise' as the Doctor, Glospin regenerated again to conceal his role in the murder (PROSE: Lungbarrow).

I.M. Foreman Edit

  • As a priest, I.M. Foreman had been given the gift of regenerations. This made twelve different individuals, who were created by his body absorbing the DNA around him; all regenerations were caused by the Third Doctor sending Foreman's first twelve bodies back to Gallifrey's past so that they fell from a great height, each regenerating into their next body, the trauma of the regeneration causing each incarnation to lose their memories. (PROSE: Interference - Book One, Interference - Book Two)

Cavisadoratrelundar Edit

  • A Time Lord agent, Cavis nearly regenerated after she was decapitated by Queen Regent Mab, but Mab also stabbed her in both hearts to ensure that she remained dead. (PROSE: The Shadows of Avalon)

Gandarotethetledrax Edit

  • A Time Lord agent, Gandar was stabbed in the heart by Margwyn, but regenerated as Margwyn missed his second heart. (PROSE: The Shadows of Avalon)
  • Gandar regenerated again shortly after his previous regeneration when he received a fatal sword wound; his new incarnation resembled a hybrid of human and Silurian, and was far more peaceful than his previous violent selves. (PROSE: The Shadows of Avalon)

Louis Edit

Klyst Edit

  • A comment by Professor Klyst that the first regeneration was always more painful than subsequent ones suggested that she was in at least her third incarnation. (AUDIO: Unregenerate)

Elbon Edit

The Corsair Edit

  • The Corsair regenerated several times, with "a couple" of his incarnations being female. He was back to male by the time he was killed by House. He/she either created or acquired the same snake tattoo in each incarnation, appearing in a new place on his/her new body. (TV: The Doctor's Wife)

River Song Edit

  • First to second incarnation: As a little girl, Melody Pond, later known as River Song, regenerated on the streets of New York City in 1970 due to a terminal illness. (TV: Day of the Moon)
  • Second to third incarnation: Melody later regenerated in Hitler's private study in 1938 after the Führer accidentally shot her while aiming for the Teselecta. She later used up all of her remaining regenerations to heal the Eleventh Doctor from a poison with which she had infected him. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler)

Karlax Edit

The General Edit

  • The General had already regenerated ten times before his sole male incarnation led the War Council during the final day of the Last Great Time War. Later, the Twelfth Doctor, after asking him for his regeneration number so as to make sure that he would not kill him, triggered an eleventh regeneration in the General by shooting him with a sidearm belonging to the President's personal guard, resulting in the General returning "back to normal" as her twelfth incarnation emerged in a female form once more. (TV: Hell Bent)


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