Dictionary > Analgesic

Analgesic

Definition
noun, plural: analgesics
(pharmacology) A drug used to relieve pain without causing loss of consciousness; the anodyne properties of certain drugs
adjective
Of, pertaining to, or relating to analgesia
Supplement
Analgesics are drugs that are capable of alleviating pain but not causing loss of consciousness. They are capable of relieving pain by acting on the nervous system. Paracetamol and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are a major group of analgesics capable of producing analgesic effects as well as antipyretic and anti-inflammatory effects. The mechanism of action of these drugs appears to be on the central nervous system. They are capable of inhibiting cyclooxygenases and thereby decrease the production of prostaglandin. Cyclooxygenase enzyme (COX) inhibitors such as etoricoxib, celecoxib, and rofecoxib are another major analgesics manufactured in order to target COX2 enxyme specifically. NSAIDs tend to act on both COX1 and COX2. The inhibition of COX1 results in unwarranted effects. Therefore, COX2 inhibitors are made in order produce analgesic effects while circumventing certain adverse effects. Other major analgesics are the opioids. The opioids (e.g. morphine) are often used for pain relief, including anesthesia.
Word origin: Greek an- (without) + algesis (sense of pain), algos (pain)
Synonym(s):

  • painkiller

Compare:

  • anesthetic
  • See also:

    Related term(s):

  • Adjuvant analgesic
  • Mentioned in:


    You will also like...

    An artist depiction of a Precambrian multicellular life form.
    The Evolution of Cell Organelles

    The nucleus containing the genetic material, DNA, and the mitochondria, well-identified as the "powerhouse of the cell",..

    Growth Patterns
    Growth Patterns

    This tutorial describes the sigmoid curve, annual plant growth, tree growth, human growth, and insect growth as the grow..

    Genetics and Evolution
    Genetics and Evolution

    Humans are diploid creatures. This means that for every chromosome in the body, there is another one to match it. Howeve..

    Developmental Biology
    Developmental Biology

    Developmental biology is a biological science that is primarily concerned with how a living thing grows and attains matu..

    A chart depicting Mendel's Law of Dominance
    Mendel’s Law & Mendelian Genetics

    One of Mendel’s law of inheritance is the “law of dominance”. Read this tutorial to know more about this form of i..

    Freshwater lake ecosystem
    Freshwater Producers and Consumers

    Freshwater ecosystem is comprised of four major constituents, namely elements and compounds, plants, consumers, and deco..