Definition of heroin in US English:

heroin

noun

  • A highly addictive analgesic drug derived from morphine, often used illicitly as a narcotic producing euphoria.

    Alternative name: diacetylmorphine; chemical formula: C₁₇H₁₇NO(C₂H₃O₂)₂

    • ‘The defence said that all these had been triggered by his heroin addiction and the need to get cash to feed it.’
    • ‘The chemists targeted provide the heroin substitute methadone to addicts under the Methadone Treatment Scheme.’
    • ‘In each case, the drug user had been injecting heroin into subcutaneous tissue.’
    • ‘Any person trying heroin or any addictive drug for the first time knows that it can hook you.’
    • ‘There was a small article about Cobain having an accidental heroin overdose in Italy.’
    • ‘When he was 16, his mother, a heroin addict, killed herself.’
    • ‘Caffeine is addictive and hooks you in the same way as amphetamines, cocaine and heroin.’
    • ‘About $1.5 million worth of pure South American heroin is sold in the city every day.’
    • ‘I got into heroin when a mate came to my flat and asked if he could use the toilet.’
    • ‘At that time, street heroin use was virtually unknown in Australia.’
    • ‘Hand guns and heroin were seized by drugs squad police in the latest Crack Down raids.’
    • ‘People say it is the start of the slippery slope to harder things like cocaine and heroin.’
    • ‘It is widely used as a substitute for patients who are attempting to combat addiction to heroin.’
    • ‘Yes, the use of heroin and harder drugs has also risen steadily there over a similar period.’
    • ‘Due to this classification, it does not incur such penalties as cocaine or heroin do.’
    • ‘Adrian died of a heroin overdose which some of his friends thought was deliberate.’
    • ‘In the past he had been addicted to heroin and crack cocaine but was now trying to get treatment and detox.’
    • ‘Prescription heroin maintenance was standard practice in England from the 1920s to 1960s.’
    • ‘After all, we give heroin addicts methadone don't we?’
    • ‘Using heroin through injection has many associated risks, mainly from sharing needles, which is common among injectors.’
    drugs, narcotics, addictive drugs, recreational drugs, illegal drugs
    View synonyms

Origin

Late 19th century: from German Heroin, from Latin heros ‘hero’ (because of its effects on the user's self-esteem).

Pronunciation

heroin

/ˈhɛroʊən//ˈherōən/