One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A crystalline alkaloid drug obtained from some ephedras. It causes constriction of the blood vessels and widening of the bronchial passages, and is used to relieve asthma and hay fever.
- ‘In the 1960s, drug therapy was limited to potassium iodide and ephedrine.’
- ‘He studied the tissue distribution and metabolism of caffeine, amphetamines, ephedrine, and narcotic drugs.’
- ‘If the medicines aspirin, ephedrine, and morphine were once botanicals, how did they get to be tested and marketed as drugs?’
- ‘A 43 year old general practitioner had had juvenile asthma requiring regular ephedrine.’
- ‘Substances like phentermine and other drugs, such as ephedrine, are hidden in many supplements that the players don't know about.’
Late 19th century: from ephedra + -ine.
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