Medical Definition of Heroin

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Heroin: Semisynthetic drug derived from morphine. Discovered in 1874, it was introduced commercially in 1898 by the Bayer company in Germany. The name heroin was coined from the German heroisch meaning heroic, strong. Heroin is stronger (more potent) than morphine.

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Reviewed on 12/12/2018

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