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February 3, 1940

THE USE AND ABUSE OF BARBITURATES AND OTHER NARCOTICS

JAMA. 1940;114(5):430-431. doi:10.1001/jama.1940.02810050050021

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Abstract

To the Editor:—  There is need for a new word in anesthesia. I suggest anarchapnea—with the stress on the third syllable. It is derived from the Greek "archon," meaning governor or ruler, as in monarch; "anarchos," meaning ungoverned or anarchy, and "pneuma," breath or respiration, as in pneumonia, hyperpnea and apnea. Anarchapnea would therefore indicate the state, now frequently induced in obstetric delivery rooms and surgical operating rooms, in which the normal governor or control of respiraton—its archon—is abolished. And the adjective anarchapnic would express the capacity of certain narcotic drugs, particularly the barbiturates when used in excess, to induce this state.Such a word would force recognition of a feature of deep barbiturate narcosis which, although demonstrated by ample evidence both in clinic and laboratory (Clark, A. J.: Edinburgh M. J.45:829 [Dec.] 1938. Tatum, A. L.: Physiol. Rev.19:472 [Oct.] 1939), is now often ignored by

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