1. Therapeutic agent; any substance, other than food, used in the prevention, diagnosis, alleviation, treatment, or cure of disease. For types or classifications of drugs, see the specific name. SEE ALSO: agent. 2. To administer or take a d., usually implying an overly large quantity or a narcotic. 3. General term for any substance, stimulating or depressing, that can be habituating or addictive, especially a narcotic. [M.E. drogge]
- addictive d. any d. that creates a certain degree of euphoria and has a strong potential for addiction.
- crude d. an unrefined preparation, usually of plant origin, that occurs either in the entire, nearly entire, broken, cut, or powdered state.
- disease modifying antirheumatic drugs agents that apparently alter the course and progression of rheumatoid arthritis, as opposed to more rapidly acting substances that suppress inflammation and decrease pain, but do not prevent cartilage or bone erosion or progressive disability.
- d. holiday interval when a chronically medicated patient temporarily stops taking the medication; used to allow some recuperation of normal functions, to maintain sensitivity to the d., and to reduce the likelihood of side-effects.
- nonsteroidal anti- inflammatory drugs (NSAID) a large number of drugs exerting anti-inflammatory (and also usually analgesic and antipyretic) actions; examples include aspirin, acetaminophen, diclofenac, indomethacine, ketorolac, ibuprofen, and naproxen. A contrast is made with steroidal compounds (such as hydrocortisone or prednisone) exerting anti-inflammatory activity.
- orphan drugs SYN: orphan products, under product.
- psychodysleptic d. SYN: hallucinogen.
- psycholytic d. SYN: hallucinogen.
- psychotropic d. any d. that affects the mind.
- recreational d. SYN: street d..
- scheduled d. a d. assigned to any of the five schedules in the Controlled Substances Act (1970). SEE ALSO: controlled substance.
- street d. a controlled substance taken for non-medical purposes. Street drugs comprise various amphetamines, anesthetics, barbiturates, opiates, and psychoactive drugs, and many are derived from natural sources ( e.g., the plants Papaver somniferum, Cannibis sativa, Amanita pantherina, Lophophora williamsii). Slang names include acid (lysergic acid diethylamide), angel dust (phencyclidine), coke (cocaine), downers (barbiturates), grass (marijuana), hash (concentrated tetrahydrocannibinol), magic mushrooms (psilocybin), and speed (amphetamines). During the 1980s, a new class of “designer drugs” arose, mostly analogs of psychoactive substances intended to escape regulation under the Controlled Substances Act. Also, crack cocaine, a potent, smokable form of cocaine, emerged as a major public health problem. In the U.S. illicit use of drugs such as cocaine, marijuana, and heroin historically has occurred in cycles. SYN: recreational d..

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drug 'drəg n
1 a) a substance used as a medication or in the preparation of medication
b) according to the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (1) a substance recognized in an official pharmacopoeia or formulary (2) a substance intended for use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease (3) a substance other than food intended to affect the structure or function of the body (4) a substance intended for use as a component of a medicine but not a device or a component, part, or accessory of a device
2) something and often an illicit substance that causes addiction, habituation, or a marked change in consciousness
drug vb, drugged; drug·ging vt
1) to affect with a drug esp to stupefy by a narcotic drug
2) to administer a drug to vi to take drugs for narcotic effect

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any substance that affects the structure or functioning of a living organism. Drugs are widely used for the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of disease and for the relief of symptoms. The term 'medicine' is sometimes preferred for therapeutic drugs in order to distinguish them from narcotics and other addictive drugs that are used illegally.

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(drug) 1. a chemical substance that affects the processes of the mind or body. 2. any chemical compound that is administered as an aid in the diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of disease or other abnormal condition, for the relief of pain or suffering, or to control or improve any physiologic or pathologic condition. 3. recreational d. 4. to administer such a substance to someone.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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