drug n Drug, medicinal, pharmaceutical, biologic, simple are comparable when they denote a substance used by it-self or in a mixture with other substances for the treatment of or in the diagnosis of disease.
Drug is the ordinary comprehensive term in both general and professional use for such a substance, whether of plant, animal, or mineral origin, or produced synthetically, and in its broadest use denotes any substance used as a medicine or in making medicines. Especially in technical use the term also has certain more specific uses; sometimes it may denote a medicinal substance recognized in an official pharmacopoeia or formulary as distinguished from one used in folk medicine or proprietary remedies; even more specifically it may denote a narcotic and especially an addictive narcotic substance.
Medicinal is interchangeable with drug in the latter's comprehensive sense and is often preferred, especially in commerce, in manufacture, and in law where indication of the ultimate use of the substance is for one reason or another desirable

exports of medicinals to China


medicinals are not contraband

Pharmaceutical is also often preferred to drug by pharmacists and manufacturers, especially as a designation of drugs (as quinine, cod-liver oil, and aspirin) which are commercially refined or prepared or synthetically manufactured. The term is also used to distinguish strictly therapeutic substances from other substances of similar origin or composition

the company produces pharmaceuticals, dyes, and cosmetics

Biologic is the increasingly frequent designation for a therapeutic product (as a globulin, serum, vaccine, or antibody) that is ultimately a product of living organisms.
Simple usually denotes a plant product used for its real or fancied medicinal value especially in primitive or folk medicine

boneset, tansy, and other homely simples

It may also be used of a plant drug or medicinal preparation containing only one active ingredient.
Analogous words: medicine, medicament, medication, *remedy, physic, specific, cure

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

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  • drug — [drʌg] noun [countable] 1. a medicine or substance for making medicines; = PHARMACEUTICAL: • a drug used in the treatment of cancer • a drugs company ˌover the ˈcounter ˌdrug abbreviation OTC drug …   Financial and business terms

  • drug — drug·gery; drug·get; drug·gist; drug·gist·er; drug; drug·less; an·ti·drug; drug·gie; drug·gy; drug·ola; mul·ti·drug; poly·drug; …   English syllables

  • drug — DRUG, (1, 2) drugi, s.m., (3) druguri, s.n. 1. s.m. Bară de fier sau de lemn având diverse întrebuinţări (în lucrări de construcţii). ♦ (înv.) Lingou. 2. s.m. Fiecare dintre cele două lemne groase, sprijinite pe câte două picioare, care… …   Dicționar Român

  • Drug — Drug, n. [F. drogue, prob. fr. D. droog; akin to E. dry; thus orig., dry substance, hers, plants, or wares. See {Dry}.] 1. Any animal, vegetable, or mineral substance used in the composition of medicines. [1913 Webster] Whence merchants bring… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • drug — drȗg m <V drȗže, N mn drȕgovi/drȗzi jez. knjiž.> DEFINICIJA 1. osoba vezana s kim prijateljstvom, solidarnošću i kolegijalnim odnosima [dobar drug]; drugar 2. onaj koji je ravan [školski drug]; drugar, parnjak 3. a. riječ za oslovljavanje u …   Hrvatski jezični portal

  • drug — [drug] n. [ME drogge < OFr drogue < ? LowG drooge (fat), dry (cask), the adj. mistaken as the name of the contents: see DRY] 1. any substance used as a medicine or as an ingredient in a medicine which kills or inactivates germs, or affects… …   English World dictionary

  • drug — I noun alterant, analgesic, anesthetic, anesthetic agent, anodyne, antibiotic, chemical substance, curative preparation, medical preparation, medicament, medicamentum, medication, medicinal component, medicinal ingredient, narcotic preparation,… …   Law dictionary

  • Drug — Drug, v. t. 1. To affect or season with drugs or ingredients; esp., to stupefy by a narcotic drug. Also Fig. [1913 Webster] The laboring masses . . . [were] drugged into brutish good humor by a vast system of public spectacles. C. Kingsley. [1913 …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • drug up — ˌdrug ˈup [transitive] [present tense I/you/we/they drug up he/she/it drugs up present participle drugging up past tense …   Useful english dictionary

  • Drug — (dr[u^]g), v. i. [See 1st {Drudge}.] To drudge; to toil laboriously. [Obs.] To drugge and draw. Chaucer. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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