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Therapeutic Drugs and Medicines Essay Sample

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Therapeutic Drugs and Medicines Essay Sample

Explain in your own words what we mean by:

* A medicine – a substance that does not affect the cells of the human body.

* A drug – a substance that affects the cells of the human body.

* A therapeutic drug – “A drug used to treat a disease or condition; contrast with drug of abuse”

Type of Drug

How it is used

Examples of this type of compound

Relative importance in Health care

Other information


Abolishes the growth of micro-organisms


Fights bacterial infections.

Antiviral drugs are medicines that cure or control virus infections.


treating viral infections


Fight viral infections


to relieve pain


Relieve pain


eliminate effects mediated by histamine


It block the action of histamine


Stop high blood pressure


Diverts beta blackness stetting

Anti- Inflammatory

reduces inflammation


Are used primarily to treat inflammation,


feeling of pain and other sensations blocked


Block pain and other sensations

How Aspirin works in the body

Aspirin helps solve the body’s pain problems by keeping it from making prostaglandins. The role of prostaglandins in the body is that it stimulates the inplammatory response and production of pain and fever.

In order to do this, the aspirin has to attach itself onto the enzyme cyclooxygenase 2, also known as COX-2. The body produces this COX-2 in order to find chemicals in the tissues and make them into prostaglandins. By attaching to the COX-2, the aspirin keeps it from doing what it is supposed to do. When we take aspirin, the Aspirin travels to the stomach, where it then dissolves. From here, it goes through the digestive tract to the small intestines, where the Aspirin is absorbed.

Now, the medicine enters the bloodstream where it is spread throughout the entire body. Once spread throughout the body, the Aspirin tracks down the prostaglandins which are generally near or around the spot of pain.

Unfortunately, in order to keep the lining in the stomach thick, the body needs prostaglandins. The enzyme COX-1 makes the prostaglandin in the stomach. Since aspirin attaches to all prostaglandins, the COX-1 is also affected, leaving the stomach lining thin. Most likely, this is the reason that the stomach becomes upset after taking Aspirin or some other form of pain reliever. After a certain amount of time, the body finds a way to get rid of all medicines. The stomach and a few other organs change Aspirin into salicylic acid.

A prostaglandin is any member of a group of lipid compounds that are derived from fatty acids and have important functions in the animal body. Prostaglandins are highly potent substances that are not stored but are produced as needed by cell membranes in virtually every body tissue.


Anesthesia is a state in which the patient feels no pain. This may range from blocking the sensation of one small part of the body to total unconsciousness. Whenever you have surgery, you usually have some kind of anesthesia. The anesthesia allows the surgeon to perform the surgery painlessly. There are many different types of anesthesia.

General Anesthesia

When you have general anesthesia you are completely unaware of your surroundings. The messages of pain or sensations that normally travel to your brain for processing are no longer processed.

Usually with General Anesthesia your breathing is controlled with a breathing tube placed in your airway after you are asleep.

Spinal Anesthesia

With spinal anesthesia you are given an injection in your lower back. The medication blocks the messages carried to the brain from the nerves in the lower half of your body. After the injection you feel numb from about your waist down to your toes.

Epidural Anesthesia

Epidural anesthesia is similar to spinal anesthesia except during the shot in your back a tiny plastic tube is inserted through the needle. After the needle is removed, medicine can be given through the plastic tube.

This medication will block your sensations or feelings from about your waist down. More medication can be given throughout the procedure as needed to maintain your anesthesia. Although the effect of the epidural anesthetic and spinal anesthetic may be identical the epidural catheter allows prolonged anesthesia and analgesia after surgery. The spinal anesthetic will only last from one to three hours.

Regional Anesthesia

With regional anesthesia, a local anesthetic is injected close to or around a group of nerves to block the feeling to one part of your body such as your arm your hand or your foot.

How the body absorbs medication

Before any medication can be absorbed by the body it first has to enter the body. It can do this in many ways. These ways are:

* Oral sublingual, buccal.

* Instillation (optic, in ear, rectal, vaginal).

* inhalation ( respiratory)

* Parenteral (intravenous, subcutaneous, intramuscular, intradermal),

* Topical (percutaneous absorption and intraspinal).

Most oral drugs do not go directly into systemic circulation. It has to pass though the digestive system first.

Our body recognizes drugs as a foreign substance. It then removes them usually in urine or in bowel movements. Many drugs are removed unchanged by the kidneys in urine. Other drugs must be processed by the liver. Enzymes in the liver change drug molecules and then they are eliminated in urine or in bowel movements.

When you take a pill the drug goes from the stomach into the intestine and then into the liver before circulating to the rest of the body. If the drug is easily broken down by the liver then very little of the drug reaches the body.

Once absorbed by your body, the drug spreads throughout the body in blood vessels. They provide a way for the drug travels from one area to another area. Once a drug has finished doing its job it is empty from the body. This can be done in many ways such as in urine, the gut, in fasces, lungs and through sweat.

Before a medication can be sold it must go through thorough safety testing. People will work with doctors and some researchers to study if it is safe enough to use and if there are any dangerous side effects and how well it works.

Before a medication can be sold to the public it goes through several stages. It takes 10 – 15 years to develop and test a new medication to ensure that it’s safe and effective for people to use.







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