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Drug Action

Drug Action and Interactions

Receptors Cellular protein that binds to a hormone so that a response can be elicited.
Pharmacodynamics The study of interactions between drugs and their receptors and the series of events that result in a pharmacologic response.
Agonists Drugs that interact with a receptor to stimulate a response.
Antagonists Drugs that attach to a receptor but do not stimulate a response; used to block the receptor from attaching to another substance.
Partial Agonists Drugs that attach and elicit a small response but also block other responses.
Enteral Administering a drug directly into the gastrointestinal tract by oral, rectal, or nasogastric routes.
Parenteral Subcutaneous, intramuscular, or intravenous method of administration; treatment by injection.
Percutaneous A method of drug administration that includes inhalation, sublingual (under the tongue), or topical (on the skin) administration.
Pharmacokinetics The study of the mathematical relationships among the absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of individual medicines over time.
Absorption When a drug moves from its site of administration to the blood.
Distribution The ways in which drugs are transported by the circulating body fluids to the sites of action (receptors), metabolism, and excretion.
Drug blood level An assay to determine the amount of drug present in a blood sample.
Metabolism Tissue change; the sum of all the physical and chemical process by which a living creature is produced and maintained; the transformation by which energy is made available for the uses of the organism.
Excretion Elimination of drug metabolites and, in many cases, the active drug itself from the body.
Half-life The amount of time required to eliminate 50% of the drug from the body.
Onset of action Time when the concentration of a drug at the site of action is sufficient to start a physiologic (pharmacologic) response.
Peak action Time at which the drug reaches the highest concentrations on the target receptor sites, inducing the maximal pharmacologic response for the dose given.
Duration of action The length of time a drug has a pharmacologic effect on an individual.
Desired action The expected response that occurs when a drug enters a patient and is absorbed and distributed.
Side effects The unintended response produced by drugs when they affect more than one body system simultaneously. Also known as adverse effects.
Common adverse effects Symptoms that can be alleviated or prevented by actions of the nurse or patient that will require immediate planning for patient education.
Serious adverse effects Symptoms of drug therapy for which the nurse has a responsibility to monitor the patient and report these symptoms to the healthcare provider.
Idiosyncratic reaction An adverse drug reaction resulting from a genetic polymorphism.
Allergic reactions Reaction to a drug in which a patient has developed antibodies to previous exposure of the drug, and upon re-exposure, the antibodies cause a reaction such as hives
Drug interaction When the action of one drug is altered by the action of another.
Unbound drug Medicines not bonded to proteins. Usually dissolved in blood and does not require a protein carrier.
Additive effect A drug interaction that occurs when two drugs with similar actions are taken, thus doubling the effect.
Synergistic effect The combined effect of two drugs is greater than the sum of the effect of each drug given alone.
Antagonistic effect A drug interaction in which one drug interferes with the action of another.
Displacement The displacement from protein-binding sites of the first drug by a second drug, increasing the activity of the first drug.
Interference The drug interaction that occurs when the first drug inhibits the metabolism or excretion of the second drug, causing increased activity of the second drug.
Incompatibility A drug interaction that occurs when the first drug is chemically incompatible with the second drug, causing deterioration when both drugs are mixed in the same syringe or solution.
Created by: Jessica Venyke
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