at·​ro·​pine | \ˈa-trə-ˌpēn \

Definition of atropine 

: a racemic mixture of hyoscyamine obtained from any of various solanaceous plants (such as belladonna) and used especially in the form of its sulfate for its anticholinergic effects (such as pupil dilation or inhibition of smooth muscle spasms)

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The most important therapies are atropine, oximes and anticonvulsants. Ellen Barry, New York Times, "Skripal Attack Scared U.K. Doctors: ‘We Were Expecting Them Not to Survive’," 29 May 2018 The chemical antidotes pralidoxime and the cheaper atropine were deployed after recent attacks in Syria, but doctors in the area worry their dwindling supplies offer little protection against possible future attacks. Ian Haydon, Scientific American, "Enzymes versus Nerve Agents: Designing Antidotes for Chemical Weapons," 11 Apr. 2017 All nerve agent victims are given atropine, which blocks muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Richard Stone, Science | AAAS, "U.K. attack shines spotlight on deadly nerve agent developed by Soviet scientists," 19 Mar. 2018 There is no treatment, only supportive care, including oxygen, anti-seizure medication, atropine, used for some poisoning patients, and pralidoxime chloride, given to inhibit poisoning including by nerve agents. Steve George, CNN, "Russian spy attack nerve agent was rare, dangerous and sophisticated," 13 Mar. 2018 At this point, the victim’s life could be saved only by the administration of atropine, which counteracts the agent and allows the body to metabolize it. Ellen Barry And Ceylan Yeginsu, New York Times, "The Nerve Agent Too Deadly to Use, Until Someone Did," 13 Mar. 2018 Antidotes do exist, one being atropine, but have to be administered quickly, otherwise the effect of the nerve agent cannot be reversed. Simon Cotton, Scientific American, "Nerve Agents: What Are They and How Do They Work?," 9 Mar. 2018 Syringes of adrenaline, atropine and amiodorone are prepared to stimulate and stabilize the faltering currents of a heart muscle starved of oxygen. Melissa Healy,, "DIY or die: How an Australian outback nurse diagnosed his own heart attack and saved his life," 8 Mar. 2018 Samuel would need constant care and heavy medication: atropine for his eyes, Revatio for his lungs, Keppra and Topomax for his epilepsy. Jenny Staletovich, miamiherald, "He was born with microcephaly and weeks early. And this mom couldn’t love her baby more," 11 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'atropine.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of atropine

1820, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for atropine

German Atropin, from New Latin Atropa, genus name of belladonna, from Greek Atropos, one of the three Fates

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The first known use of atropine was in 1820

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at·​ro·​pine | \ˈa-trə-ˌpēn \

Medical Definition of atropine 

: a racemic mixture of hyoscyamine usually obtained from belladonna and related plants of the family Solanaceae and used especially in the form of its hydrated sulfate (C17H23NO3)2·H2SO4·H2O for its anticholinergic effects (as relief of smooth muscle spasms or dilation of the pupil of the eye)

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to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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