Pharmacy teams have stressful jobs, so it’s important to laugh off the stress sometimes. You might have been often faced with the embarrassment of bursting out laughing at a customer as they ask you for ‘Dom Perignon’ the popular champagne as opposed to Domperidone, an anti sickness medicine used to treat nausea. However, some weird drug names are justified, for example, ‘Lasix’, which is a diuretic that ‘lasts six’ hours. It also reduces blood pressure and water fluid retention. The FDA rejects about 4 out of every 10 drug name proposals to prevent their misuse. Creative manufacturers may lead to dangerous mix ups!
Here is our 5 top favourite funny drug names, something to give you a tickle that only Pharmacists would understand!:
If your stomach is not moving food through quickly and you're experiencing nausea, would you want a glass of Dom Pérignon? Hmm. Surely not! However, you might welcome a tablet of domperidone! Used to treat nausea and to help nursing mothers with milk production, it is a popular choice in some places. You might be wondering … how did it get this name? All the other drugs that end in -peridone are antipsychotics. Yes, but they have this in common with domperidone: They block the effects of dopamine in your system. (Champagne, as it happens, does the opposite.)
Does this look like it should be said like "I'd be none"? Actually, it's said like "eye-deb-a-known." It's a new drug that has been tried for treating Alzheimer's disease and some other neurological disorders, but it hasn't really been very successful in the market. Due to its high antioxidant levels, this drug scavenges oxidative damage and protects your brain from free radicals. If you go looking for any bottles of it in your local pharmacy, I'd bet you'd find none.
Will this drug make you a sky walker? Well, if you have rheumatoid arthritis, it may help. And did the people who named this drug have a fondness for Star Wars? It has been postulated that anakinra might help neutralise the severe acute respiratory syndrome and the name connection with star wars appears to be a coincidence. Now how about something for that asthma?
Would you put a splat right in your drug name? Well, this chemotherapy drug for cancer has been on the market since 1978. It actually got its name from being an isomer of a platinum-containing compound. The two isomers (molecules that are the same except for their orientation) of the compound are the trans ("that side") and cis ("this side") isomers. This one works against some kinds of cancer.
Does this sound like a name for a cure-all? Well, it depends on what you mean by cure, I suppose… It's a very potent muscle relaxant. The cur part of the name is a reference to curare, to which it has some chemical resemblance. There are several -curonium drugs on the market. By the way, the full chemical name for pancuronium bromide is [(2S,3S,5S,8R,9S,10S,13S,14S,16S,17R)-17-acetyloxy-10,13-dimethyl-2,16-bis(1-methyl-3,4,5,6-tetrahydro-2H-pyridin-1-yl)-2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,11,12,14,15,16,17-tetradecahydro-1H-cyclopenta[a]phenanthren-3-yl] acetate.
So, If you don't need a muscle relaxant after reading that, you're doing pretty well.