Antipyrine Antifebrin Phenacetin And Aniline

Many of the synthetical coal-tar products now so largely employed as

analgesics are powerful toxic agents.

=Phenazone, Antipyrine, or Analgesin=, is a complex benzene derivative

prepared from aniline, aceto-acetic ether, and methyl iodide. It is in

colourless, inodorous, scaly crystals, which have a bitter taste. It is

soluble in its own weight of water.

Tests.--Can be extracted from an alkaline solution of chloroform. The

residue left on the evaporation of chloroform should be employed for

testing. If heated with strong nitric acid and allowed to cool, a purple

colour is produced. Ferric chloride gives a blood-red coloration,

destroyed by the addition of mineral acids.

Treatment.--Stimulants freely, inhalation of oxygen, patient to be

kept in the recumbent position.

=Acetanilide, Antifebrin, Phenylacetamide= (a constituent of 'Daisy' or

'headache' powders), is obtained by the interaction of acetic acid and

aniline. It is in colourless, inodorous, lamellar crystals, which have a

slight pungent taste. It is insoluble in water.

Tests.--May be extracted from acid solutions by ether or chloroform.

If heated with solution of potassium hydroxide, odour of aniline is

given off; if liquid, when it is warmed with a few drops of chloroform,

a penetrating and unpleasant odour of isocyanide.

Treatment.--Emetics, stimulants, inhalation of ether, recumbent


=Phenacetin, Phenacetinum=, is produced by the interaction of glacial

acetic acid and para-phenetidin. It is in white, tasteless, inodorous,

glistening, scaly crystals, insoluble in water. Of all the members of

the group, it most rarely produces toxic symptoms.

Treatment.--As for the other members of this group.

=Exalgin, Aspirin, etc.=, as well as the above, may all act as poisons

to certain persons, and even small medicinal doses may cause serious and

even fatal consequences.

Symptoms (more or less common to all).--Nausea, vomiting, hurried

respiration, marked cyanosis, syncope. Persistent sneezing and

widespread urticaria may be present; collapse.

=Aniline= is an oily liquid, heavier than, and not soluble in, water. It

is colourless or reddish-brown; it has a peculiar tar-like odour; it is

soluble in alcohol, and forms a soluble sulphate with sulphuric acid. A

solution of bleaching-powder gives with solution of the sulphate a

purple colour changing to red-brown.

Symptoms.--Nausea, vomiting, giddiness, intoxication, drowsiness,

gasping for breath, feeble pulse, and marked cyanosis. In its

industrial use it may act as a poison either by inhalation of the

fumes or by absorption through the skin. The symptoms then are mainly

those of peripheral neuritis with blindness.

Fatal Dose.--About 6 drachms.

Treatment.--Wash out stomach; stimulants, artificial respiration,

inhalation of oxygen, transfusion.

=Nitro-benzol= (Artificial Oil of Bitter Almonds).--It is used in

perfumery, but is very poisonous when swallowed, or inhaled, or absorbed

through skin. It is used in the manufacture of aniline dyes, and may act

as an industrial poison. The symptoms closely resemble those of aniline

poisoning, but there is perhaps greater mental confusion.

Fatal Dose.--Eight to ten drops have caused death.

Treatment.--Emetics, stimulants, transfusion of saline or blood,

pituitrin, strychnine, or digitalin hypodermically.

=Nitroglycerine= gives rise to intense and persistent headache ('powder

headache'). Throbbing and pulsation of all the arteries in the body;

flushing of the face and collapse may follow.

=Dinitrobenzene= causes symptoms resembling nitro-benzol poisoning, and

when acting as a chronic poison gives rise to weakness, jaundice,

peripheral neuritis.

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