Origin of salicylic acid
French salicylique, from salicyle, the group HOC6H4CO, from salicine salicin + -yle -yl
First Known Use: 1840
Medical Definition of salicylic acid
: a crystalline phenolic acid C7H6O3 that is the ortho form of hydroxybenzoic acid and is used especially in making pharmaceuticals and dyes, as an antiseptic and disinfectant especially in treating skin diseases, as a keratolytic agent for skin exfoliation, and in the form of salts and other derivatives as an analgesic and antipyretic and in the treatment of rheumatism—see aspirin
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