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Chemotherapy Chemotherapy is the use of chemicals or drugs to selectively destroy infectious micro-organisms without destroying the live tissues

or the host. The chemicals used for such purposes are called chemotherapeutic agents .{Paul Ehrlich called drugs as magic bullets and the first milestone of his research was the discovery of Salvarsan for curing syphilis, in 1909. In 1935, Gerhard Domagk, administered a dose of a dye called prontosil (inhibits the growth of streptococci bacteria) to cure his daughter's fever. This laid the foundation for modern chemotherapy and got a Nobel Prize for medicine for Domagk in 1939. Ernest Fourneau, a French scientist in 1936 proved that in the human body, prontosil breaks down to give sulphanilamide. Sulphanilamide is the actual active agent that inhibits streptococci. This study led to the discovery of sulpha drugs and from there on growth of chemotherapy has reached amazing heights.} Classification of drugs according to their action Analgesics Drugs that are used as pain relievers are called analgesics. They are of two types: a) Narcotics b) Non-narcotics Narcotics These analgesics are mainly opium and its products. Some examples are morphine, codeine and heroin. They are effective analgesics but cause addiction. Over dosage can cause sleep and unconsciousness. These analgesics are chiefly used for relief of postoperative pain, cardiac pain and pains of terminal cancer, and in child birth.

Non-narcotics Drugs belonging to this group also have antipyretic properties (decrease body temperature). Aspirin and analgin are common drugs in this category. Aspirin is used to reduce fever and relieve mild to moderate pain from conditions such as muscle aches, toothaches, common cold, and headaches. It may also be used to reduce pain and swelling in conditions such as arthritis. Aspirin is known as a salicylate and a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). Low dose of aspirinis used to prevent blood clots. This effect reduces the risk of stroke and heart attack.

Antiseptics and Disinfectants Sterilization is the process of complete elimination of micro-organisms. The chemicals used for sterilization are classified as: a) Antiseptics b) Disinfectants Antiseptics Antiseptic can be used to kill bacteria or prevent their multiplication. Antiseptics do not harm the living tissues. Therefore, they can be applied on cuts and wounds. Dettol, , savlon, , boric acid and potassium permanganate are some examples.

Choloroxylenol Terpineol Bithionol Bithionol is added to soaps to impart antiseptic properties.iodine is a powerful antiseptic. Tincture of iodine is, antiseptic( usually 23% elemental iodine, along with potassium iodide or sodium iodide, dissolved in a mixture of ethanol and water).iodoform is also an antiseptic for wounds Boric acid is applied in a very dilute solution as an eye wash. Disinfectants Disinfectants are used to kill bacteria. They are used to sterilize instruments, utensils, clothes, floors, sanitary fittings, sputum and excreta. They harm the living tissues and cannot be used on skin. Sometimes the same substance may be used as an antiseptic or disinfectant. When the concentration is less, it is an antiseptic and when the concentration is more, the substance acts as disinfectant. For instance, 0.2% solution of phenol is an antiseptic and 1.0% solution of phenol is a disinfectant. Chlorine(0.2-0.4ppm) is usually used to kill bacteria and other microbes in drinking water supplies and public swimming pools Tranquilizers Tranquillizers reduce anxiety and tension. They are of two types: a) Sedatives b) Antidepressants (mood elevators or Pep pills) Sedatives Sedatives are used for mentally agitated or violent patients. Equanil (chemical name - meprobanate) and calmpose (diazepam) are a couple of common drugs in this category.

Antidepressants or Mood Elevators or Pep Pills Antidepressants are useful for patients who are highly depressed or have lost self-confidence. These drugs produce a feeling of well-being and improve efficiency. Tofranil, vitalin, amphetamines and cocaine are some examples.

Anti-fertility Drugs With global population growing by the day, birth control has become essential. There are drugs that control ovulation and if regularly consumed, function as effective contraceptives. Some examples of birth control pills are orthonovum and Enovid. Orthonovum is a mixture of norethindrone and mestranol . Envoid is a mixture of norethynodrel and mestranol.

Antibiotics They are produced by micro-organisms that are toxic to other micro organisms. Alexander Fleming in 1920 found that bacteria donot flourish in nutrient agar surrounded by the fungus Penicillium notatum westling. He found that this fungus produces antibiotic called penicillin. There are many varieties of pencillin with the empirical formula C9H11O4SN2R. Penicillin is very effective for: i) Pneumonia ii) Bronchitis iii) Sore throat

Six natural penicillins are isolated till now. They are got by substituting various groups for R.

Ampicillin though quite effective, can cause allergy in certain patients Other antibiotics Chloramphenicol is a suitable drug for diseases like pneumonia, relapsing fever, typhoid, dysentry, whooping cough and urinary infections.

Streptomycin Streptomycin is very effective against tuberculosis, throat and lung infections, ear and kidney infections as well. Tetracyclines

Tetracyclines (Chloro and oxy) are broad spectrum antibiotics (antibiotics capable of curing many infections) and cure diseases caused by many bacteria, large viruses, protozoa, parasites and rickettsiae. These can be orally administered since they are absorbed from the gastro intestinal tract. Antihistamines Histamine is naturally present in almost all body tissues. When the human body meets substances causing allergies, histamine is released e.g., when a person is suffering from hay fever, histamine is released. Amines that are used as drugs to control the allergy caused by histamines are called Antihistamines. Histamine release induces allergic responses in the human body like: i) Tissue inflammation ii) Itching iii) Asthma iv) Skin irritation

Tranquilizers Tranquillizers reduce anxiety and tension. They are of two types: a) Sedatives b) Antidepressants (mood elevators or Pep pills) Sedatives Sedatives are used for mentally agitated or violent patients. Equanil (chemical name - meprobanate) and calmpose (diazepam) are a couple of common drugs in this category.

Antidepressants or Mood Elevators or Pep Pills Antidepressants are useful for patients who are highly depressed or have lost self-confidence. These drugs produce a feeling of well-being and improve efficiency. Tofranil, vitalin, amphetamines and cocaine are some examples.

Antacids

Tension and mental stress escalate the level of acid in bile juice. This hyperacidity can be combated using bases like calcium carbonate, magnesium hydroxide or aluminium hydroxide in the form of tablets or aqueous suspensions. These react with hydrochloric acid in the stomach and neutralize it partially. Gelusil and Digene are two examples of antacids. Ranitidine