an·ti·dote / ˈantiˌdōt/ • n. a medicine taken or given to counteract a particular poison. ∎ something that counteracts or neutralizes an unpleasant feeling or situation: laughter is an antidote to stress. ∎ (in homeopathy) a substance that cancels or opposes the effect of a remedy. • v. [tr.] (-dotes, -dot·ed, -dot·ing) counteract or cancel with an antidote: What remedy will antidote Bryonia?DERIVATIVES: an·ti·dot·al / ˌantiˈdōtl/ adj.
A medication or treatment that counteracts a poison or its effects. An antidote may work by reducing or blocking the absorption of a poison from the stomach. It might counteract its effects directly, as in taking something to neutralize an acid. Or an antidote might work by blocking a poison at its receptor site. For example, a medication called naloxone will block opiates such as heroin at its receptors and prevent deaths that occur because of heroin overdose. In a sense, drug Antagonists can all be antidotes under some circumstances, but not all antidotes are drug antagonists.
Many cities have a telephone "poison hot line," where information on antidotes is given. In case of drug overdose or poisoning, it is advisable to call for expert medical help immediately.
Klaassen, C. D. (1990). Principles of toxicology. In A. G. Gilman, T. W. Rall, A. S. Nies, & P. Taylor (Eds.), Goodman and Gilman's the pharmacological basis of therapeutics, 8th ed. (p. 58). New York: Pergamon Press.
Michael J. Kuhar
An antidote is a medication or treatment that acts against a poison or its effects. An antidote may work by reducing the amount of poison that is absorbed from the stomach, or by blocking the absorption entirely. Some antidotes counteract a poison's effects directly. For example, an antidote can work by neutralizing an acid. Some antidotes work by blocking a poison at its receptor site in the brain. For example, a medication called naloxone blocks opiates such as heroin at its receptors, preventing death from heroin overdose. Many cities have a telephone poison hotline, where information on antidotes is given. In case of drug overdose or poisoning, call for expert medical help immediately by dialing 911.