psy·​cho·​phar·​ma·​col·​o·​gy ˌsī-kō-ˌfär-mə-ˈkä-lə-jē How to pronounce psychopharmacology (audio)
: the study of the effect of drugs on the mind and behavior
psychopharmacological adjective
or less commonly psychopharmacologic
psychopharmacologist noun

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Most of them are described in loving detail in the two heroic epics of psychopharmacology, PIKHaL and TIKHaL, written by chemists and trip veterans Alexander and Ann Shulgin. Neuroskeptic, Discover Magazine, 30 Aug. 2010 Psychiatry is now nearly synonymous with psychopharmacology. Richard J. Mcnally, WSJ, 13 May 2022 Here, more explicitly than in her portrait of Ray, Aviv joins an existing discourse about psychopharmacology, raising by now familiar concerns about the overmedication of Americans, and the impulse to treat regular human unhappiness as pathological. Jordan Kisner, The Atlantic, 13 Sep. 2022 At the outset of his career, Lichtenberg was taken with the promise of psychopharmacology. New York Times, 17 May 2022 Despite upbeat advertising campaigns for new drugs, there have been no true breakthroughs in psychopharmacology for more than a half-century. Richard J. Mcnally, WSJ, 13 May 2022 The advent of psychopharmacology in the 1950s facilitated, but did not cause, the emptying of state psychiatric hospitals. Richard J. Mcnally, WSJ, 13 May 2022 According to an overview by Marc-Antoine Crocq, who studies the history of psychiatry and psychopharmacology at University of Upper Alsace in Mulhouse, France, mentions of cannabis show up in ancient texts from India, Egypt and the Roman Empire. New York Times, 1 Jan. 2022 Then, seemingly overnight, psychopharmacology changed much of that. Scott Shannon, Wired, 18 May 2021 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1920, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of psychopharmacology was in 1920

Dictionary Entries Near psychopharmacology

Cite this Entry

“Psychopharmacology.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Feb. 2023.

Medical Definition


psy·​cho·​phar·​ma·​col·​o·​gy ˌsī-kō-ˌfär-mə-ˈkäl-ə-jē How to pronounce psychopharmacology (audio)
plural psychopharmacologies
: the study of the effect of drugs on the mind and behavior

More from Merriam-Webster on psychopharmacology

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