How Does Nitroglycerin Save Lives?

How Does Nitroglycerin Save Lives?

Nitroglycerin is one of the most effective medicines for the treatment of angina pectoris (chest pain caused by cardiovascular disease). When Ascanio Sobrero synthesized nitroglycerin, he placed a trace of compound on his tongue to taste it. This caused him a severe headache, then he suggested a lowering blood pressure effect for the nitroglycerin.

⚠️  Keep in mind that laboratory chemicals should NEVER be tasted.

After several years, the physicians recognized the therapeutic benefit of nitroglycerin. The mechanism through which nitroglycerin miraculously saves the lives of heart patients remained a mystery, until studies showed that the therapeutic benefit of nitroglycerin is attributed to nitric oxide (NO). The liberated nitric oxide is responsible for widening blood vessels, helping to regulate blood pressure and preventing formation of blood clots.

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