One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An alkaloid present in ergot. An amide of lysergic acid, it has oxytocic activity and is given to control bleeding after childbirth.
- ‘Doctors seldom have an important role, except perhaps to provide reassurance, but they may need to administer a uterine contractant such as ergometrine.’
- ‘Thankfully, I delivered the placenta without difficulty, or ergometrine.’
- ‘The studies reviewed used oxytocin, ergometrine, or a mixture of those drugs administered intravenously or intramuscularly immediately after delivery of the infant.’
- ‘In this trial, women tended to have a lower height of the uterine fundus from day 1 postpartum and had a significantly lower height on day 5 postpartum than those receiving ergometrine.’
1930s: from ergot + Greek mētra ‘womb’ + -ine.
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