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cholinesterase inhibitor

cholinesterase inhibitor in Medicine

cholinesterase inhibitor n.
A drug, such as neostigmine, that restores myoneural function by inhibiting the biodegradation of acetylcholine.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Encyclopedia Article for cholinesterase inhibitor

anticholinesterase

any of several drugs that prevent destruction of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine by the enzyme acetylcholinesterase within the nervous system. Acetylcholine acts to transmit nerve impulses within the parasympathetic nervous system-i.e., that part of the autonomic nervous system that tends to induce secretion, to contract smooth muscles, and to dilate blood vessels. In preventing the destruction of acetylcholine, anticholinesterase permits high levels of this neurotransmitter to build up at the sites of its action, thus stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system and in turn slowing the heart action, lowering blood pressure, increasing secretion, and inducing contraction of the smooth muscles.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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