: A venerable drug that is a naturally occurring member of a large chemical class of compounds called alkaloids. The name "morphine" was coined in 1805 by a German apothecary Adolf Serturner (1783-1841) to designate the main alkaloid in opium. Opium, of course, comes from the poppy plant. Morphine is a powerful narcotic agent with strong analgesic (pain relief) action and other significant effects on the central nervous system. It is dangerously addicting. The name "morphine" refers to Morpheus, the mythologic god of dreams.
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The major phenanthrene alkaloid of opium, which contains 9–14% of anhydrous m.. It produces a combination of depression and excitation in the central nervous system and some peripheral tissues; predominance of either central stimulation or depression depends upon the species and dose; repeated administration leads to the development of tolerance, physical dependence, and (if abused) psychic dependence. Used as an analgesic, sedative, and anxiolytic. [L. Morpheus, god of dreams or of sleep]
- m. hydrochloride white acicular or cubical crystals of bitter taste, soluble in about 25 parts of water.
- m. sulfate (MS) m. used for formulation of tablets as well as solutions for parenteral, epidural, or intrathecal injection to relieve pain.

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mor·phine 'mȯr-.fēn n a bitter crystalline addictive narcotic base C17H19NO3 that is the principal alkaloid of opium and is used in the form of its hydrated sulfate (C17H19NO3)2·H2SO4·5H2O or hydrated hydrochloride C17H19NO3·HCl·3H2O as an analgesic and sedative Mor·pheus 'mȯr-fē-əs, -.f(y)üs Greek mythological character. Morpheus was one of the sons of Hypnos, the god of sleep. As a dream-god Morpheus made human shapes appear to dreamers. His two brothers were responsible for sending forms of animals and inanimate things.

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a potent analgesic and narcotic drug used mainly to relieve severe and persistent pain. It is administered by mouth or injection; common side-effects are loss of appetite, nausea, constipation, and confusion. Morphine causes feelings of euphoria; tolerance develops rapidly and dependence may occur.

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mor·phine (morґfēn) [L. morphina, morphinum] the principal and most active opioid alkaloid of opium (q.v.), an opioid analgesic having powerful analgesic action and some central stimulant action. In the United States, it is usually used in the form of the sulfate salt, while in Germany and Great Britain, the hydrochloride salt is usually preferred. It is used as an analgesic for relief of severe pain, antitussive, adjunct to anesthesia, and as an adjunct to treatment of pulmonary edema secondary to left ventricular failure. Abuse of morphine and its salts leads to dependence. morphinic adj

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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