21 Jul Surprising facts about medicines
There is something about medicine that fascinates everyone. Whether you are involved in clinical research or medical translation, there are always thousands of things to learn. It’s a similar story with medicines. Traditional medicine has been present in all kinds of civilisations since ancient times and that is why it has curiosities that do not go unnoticed. Do you want to find out about them? Then please read on.
The oldest medicines
Ancient civilisations were already using medicines to heal people. Although they were not called medicines at that time, natural remedies have existed for time immemorial. Medical translators have found references dating back as far as 4,000 years ago in Mesopotamia, where belladonna was used for spasms. The Egyptians also used herbal poultices with different medicinal properties.
Many centuries later came the first commercially available medicine in pill form. This happened in 1899. And yes, if you are thinking that this could be Aspirin, you are right. After numerous clinical trials, a medicine was found that could help with the most common pains. The emergence of Aspirin kick-started the modern pharmaceutical industry. In 1950, it entered the Guinness Book of Records as the best-selling medicine. It is estimated that to date, more than 350 billion aspirin tablets have been manufactured since production began.
The most expensive medicine
Some medicines are affordable but others are less so. In this case, the most expensive medicine in history known to date is one that contains the antibody needed to treat paroxysmal nocturnal haemoglobinuria, a rare disease in which red blood cells are destroyed faster than normal. The medicine containing the antibody is called Soliris and costs €240,000.
The most addictive medicine
There are also highly addictive medicines. This is the case for all those in the opioid group, used to relieve severe pain. Opioids are obtained by processing the dried latex of opium poppy plants (Papaver Somniferun). This group includes morphine and some of its derivatives. Other derivatives, such as heroin, are illegal.
Medicine is a world to be discovered. In medical translation we often find incredible situations in the world of medicines and clinical research. If you want to know more, keep up to date with the latest news from Okomeds.