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Chemistry plays very important role in our everyday life. Since beginning of this branch of science, it has been in the service of mankind. We always owe a debt to chemists for there important contributions for giving us life saving drugs, synthetic fibers, synthetic detergents, variety of cosmetics, preservatives for our food, strength materials, plastics, beautiful paints etc. in fact there is no aspect of our life that is not affected by the developments in chemistry.

The Chemical substances for the treatment of diseases and for reducing suffering from pains are called Medicines or Drugs. The term Chemotherapy is used for the science in which suitable chemicals are used for the treatment of diseases. These chemicals have specific effects for destroying the invading organisms without injuring the cells of the body.

An antipyretic is a type of medication that will prevent or reduce fever by lowering body temperature from a raised state. They will not affect normal body temperature if the patient does not have a fever. Generally, most non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) work by inhibiting prostaglandin synthetase within the hypothalamus. Fever, or pyrexia, occurs when the body reaches a temperature above what is considered "average". Bear in mind, however, that this "average" temperature can vary from person to person within certain parameters. It is generally accepted fever exists at a temperature above 37 degrees Celsius (98.6 degrees Fahrenheit) when the thermometer is placed under the armpit, or over 37.5 degrees Celsius (99.5 degrees Fahrenheit) when measured orally or rectally. Fever usually results from microbes such as bacteria or viruses triggering the body's defence mechanisms. This activates certain types of cells, some of which release the substance interleukin. Prostaglandin is another chemical released by the body that plays a part in this process. Prostaglandin is induced by bacterial pyrogens and is produced in the Central Nervous System (CNS). Interleukin affects the hypothalamus, which is the part of the brain that regulates body temperature, signalling it to raise the temperature by a few degrees. The hypothalamus works like a thermostat while the interleukin that is released serves to raise its preset temperature.

Analgesics are medications used to relieve pain without reducing the consciousness of the patient. They work by reducing the amount of pain felt and this is generally achieved by interfering with the way the pain message is transmitted by the nerves. Analgesics will not treat the cause of the pain but they will provide temporary relief from pain symptoms. 1

There are three main categories of analgesics. The first is the opioid analgesics which are prescription only medicines that are very potent, being chemically related to morphine. The second is the non-opioid analgesics. Non-opioid analgesics work by affecting the prostaglandin system, which is the system within the body responsible for producing pain. This category includes non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, such as Aspirin, ketoprofen and ibuprofen. The last category is adjuvant analgesics, which are medicines typically used for purposes other than pain relief. This includes some antidepressants that may also help to relieve pain in specific circumstances. It is the second of these three categories of analgesic that is the focus of this website. They are over-the-counter drugs that are can be safely used provided that the recommended dosage restrictions are observed. They are non-habit forming and have an effective ceiling, at which point the patient will derive no further benefit from increasing the dosage. Non-opioid analgesics act peripherally and not centrally like opioids that depress the central nervous system (CNS) and inhibit the brain's ability to feel pain. Non-opioid analgesics target the chemical substances released by the brain in response to injury that facilitate the transmission of the pain stimuli to the brain. The most prevalent of these chemical mediators is prostaglandin. Non-opioid NSAIDs are effective because they serve to block the release of prostaglandin at the peripheral nerve sites.


Antiseptics and disinfectants are nonselective, anti-infective agents that are applied topically. Their activity ranges from simply reducing the number of microorganisms to within safe limits of public health interpretations (sanitization), to destroying all microbes (sterilization) on the applied surface. In general, antiseptics are applied on tissues to suppress or prevent microbial infection. Disinfectants are germicidal compounds usually applied to inanimate surfaces. Sometimes the same compound may act as an antiseptic or as a disinfectant, depending on the drug concentration, conditions of exposure, number of organisms, etc. To achieve maximum efficiency, it is essential to use the proper concentration of the drug for the purpose intended. However, the logic that if a little is good, twice as much is better is not only uneconomical but often has toxicologic implications. Topical anti-infective agents are extensively used in surgery for antisepsis of the surgical area and surgeon's hands and to disinfect surgical instruments, apparel, and hospital premises. Other common uses are as disinfectants for home and farm premises, in water treatment, in public health sanitation, etc, and as antiseptics in soaps, teat dips, dairy sanitizers, etc. Antiseptics also have been used for treating local infections. However, in most cases, systemic chemotherapeutic agents are preferred because they often penetrate better into the foci of infection and are less likely than the topical anti-infectives to lose their potency when in contact with body fluids and debris in the infected area. 2

It should be noted that no prophylactic regimen is 100% effective and advice on malaria prophylaxis changes frequently. There are currently five prophylactic regimens used (A,B,C,D & E), due to the differing resistance that exists by the malaria parasites to the various drugs used. (See the above map of Malaria Endemic Areas). The tablets you require depend on the country to which you are travelling (see the table page). Start taking the tablets before travel take them absolutely regularly during your stay, preferably with or after a meal and continue to take them after you have returned. This is extremely important to cover the incubation period of the disease. Prompt Treatment If you develop a fever between one week after first exposure and up to two years after your return, you should seek medical attention and inform the doctor that you have been in a malarious area. Anyone with suspected malaria should be treated under medical supervision as soon as possible. If malaria is diagnosed then treatment is a matter of urgency. Treatment should not normally be carried out by unqualified persons. The drug treatment of malaria depends on the type and severity of the attack. Typically, Quinine Sulphate tablets are used and the normal adult dosage is 600mg every twelve hours which can also be given by intravenous infusion if the illness is severe. Remember: Prevention is better than cure and over two million people die from malaria every year. It is a very serious illness! Side Effects of Anti-Malarials Like all medicines, anti-malarials can sometimes cause side-effects: Proguanil (Paludrine) can cause nausea and simple mouth ulcers. Chloroquine (Nivaquine or Avloclor) can cause nausea, temporary blurred vision and rashes. Patients with a history of psychiatric disturbances (including depression) should not take mefloquine as it may precipitate these conditions. It is now advised that mefloquine be started two and a half weeks before travel. Doxycycline does carry some risk of photosensitisation i.e. can make you prone to sunburn. 3

Malarone is a relatively new treatment and is virtually free of side effects. No other tablets are required with mefloquine or doxycycline or Malarone

Tranquilizers are divided into a Major Tranquilizer and Minor Tranquilizer group. Major Tranquilizers include phenothiazines, indoles, thioxanthenes, butyrophenones, piperazine compounds, and piperidine compounds. Trade names include drugs such as Thorazine, Haldol, Clozaril and Risperdal. These drugs are referred to as Neuroleptics and are most commonly prescribed as anti-psychotics. This type of tranquilizer is not widely abused.Minor Tranquiliers are the more common of the tranquilizers. These include the Benzodiazepines, known by trade names such as Valium, Xanax, Serax, Ativan, Klonopin, Librium and Tranxene. There are also combination drugs such as Librax. These drugs are very commonly prescribed as antianxiety drugs, or anxiolytics. They are often referred to as Sedative/Hypnotics. They are central nervous system depressants with specific sites of action. Slang references to these drugs include Libs, Tranks, Benzos, and Vees.

These are the chemical substances used to cure infections due to microorganisms. The most common example of microbial drug is sulphanilamides which are effective in wide range of microorganisms sulphonamides in combination with trimethoprim are preferred in the treatment of infections of urinary tract.

The development of antifertility drugs is reviewed and judged as beneficial to man's social progress, although the need for safer, more convenient, and more effective contraceptives is still recognized. The unreliability and subjectivity of most reports of side effects from pill use is noted, and the need for accurate and comprehensive epidemiological studies of oral contraceptives is emphasized.

Antihistamines, usually as tablets, are the basic treatment of hayfever and some other allergic illnesses. They are also the main treatment for a kind of skin rash called 'urticaria' or 'hives', also called 'nettlerash'. 4

In hayfever, the big advantage of antihistamines is that they treat the nose, the eyes, and the terrible itching which some sufferers get in the throat or ears. The only other treatments which help so many of the symptoms are steroid tablets or injections, and desensitising injections. Both of these other treatments have disadvantages not shared by antihistamines. In hayfever the drawback of antihistamines is that they are not so effective for the blockage in the nose which troubles some people.

Antibiotics are drugs used to kill or harm specific bacteria. Since their discovery in the 1930s, antibiotics have made it possible to cure diseases caused by bacteria such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, and meningitis saving the lives of millions of people around the world. But antibiotics must be used wisely. Because bacteria are living organisms, they are always changing in an effort to resist the drugs that can kill them. When antibiotics are used incorrectly, bacteria can adapt and become resistant. Antibiotics are then no longer useful in fighting them. Antibiotic resistance is now a major public health issue. The correct use of these drugs is the best way to ensure that antibiotics remain useful in treating infections.

These are the chemical substances used to kill germs, fungi and virus. The most common examples are phenol, cresol, formaldehyde, DDT etc.

Definition Antacids are medicines that neutralize stomach acid. Purpose Antacids are used to relieve acid indigestion, upset stomach, sour stomach, and heartburn. Some antacid products also contain the ingredient simethicone to relieve gas. 5

Description Antacids are taken by mouth and work by neutralizing excess stomach acid. They contain ingredients such as aluminum hydroxide, calcium carbonate, magnesium hydroxide, and sodium bicarbonate, alone or in various combinations. Antacid products may also contain other ingredients. Antacids differ in how quickly they work and how long they provide relief. Those that dissolve rapidly in the stomach, such as magnesium hydroxide and sodium bicarbonate, bring the fastest relief. Antacids that contain calcium carbonate or aluminum dissolve more slowly and can take up to 30 minutes to begin working. The longer an antacid stays in the stomach, the longer it works. Those that contain calcium carbonate or aluminum work longer than those that contain sodium bicarbonate or magnesium. Also, taking any kind of antacid after a meal, instead of on an empty stomach, provides longer-lasting relief because the medicine stays in the stomach longer.

General anesthetics are used to produce unconsciousness during surgery. Unlike local anesthetics that are used in dentistry and minor surgery, general anesthetics circulate throughout the body, which results in a stronger action on the nervous system and a greater potential for side effects. Medications used as general anesthetics come from many different drug classifications, including barbiturates and benzodiazepines. The interactions described below pertain to anesthetics in general. For specific interactions, refer to the individual drugs.

Desflurane (Suprane) Droperidol (Inapsine) Enflurane (Ethrane) Etomidate (Amidate) Halothane Isoflurane (Forane) Ketamine (Ketalar) Methohexital (Brevital) Methoxyflurane (Penthrane) Midazolam (Versed) Nitrous oxide Propofol (Diprivan) Sevoflurane (Ultane) Thiopental (Pentothal)