- A substance produced by the medulla (inside) of the adrenal gland, adrenaline (the official name in the British Pharmacopoeia) is synonymous with epinephrine. Technically speaking, adrenaline is a sympathomimetic catecholamine. It causes quickening of the heart beat, strengthens the force of the hearts contraction, opens up the bronchioles in the lungs and has numerous other effects. The secretion of adrenaline by the adrenal is part of the "fight-or-flight" reaction that we have in response to being frightened.
* * *SYN: epinephrine.
* * *adren·a·line ə-'dren-əl-ən n EPINEPHRINE recognized by the British Pharmaceutical Codex as the preferred name for epinephrine in Great Britain
* * *n.an important hormone secreted by the medulla of the adrenal gland. It has the function of preparing the body for 'fright, flight, or fight' and has widespread effects on circulation, the muscles, and sugar metabolism. The action of the heart is increased, the rate and depth of breathing are increased, and the metabolic rate is raised; the force of muscular contraction improves and the onset of muscular fatigue is delayed. At the same time the blood supply to the bladder and intestines is reduced, their muscular walls relax, and the sphincters contract. Sympathetic nerves were originally thought to act by releasing adrenaline at their endings, and were therefore called adrenergic nerves. In fact the main substance released is the related substance noradrenaline, which also forms a portion of the adrenal secretion.Adrenaline given by injection is used in the emergency treatment of anaphylaxis and cardiac arrest. It is also included in some local anaesthetic solutions, particularly those used in dentistry, to prolong anaesthesia, and is used as eye drops for treating glaucoma.
* * *adren·a·line (ə-drenґə-lin) epinephrine.
Medical dictionary. 2011.