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Pharmacology and Therapeutics

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Glossary of Pharmacology 

Tachyphylaxis

Definition: 

When responsiveness diminishes rapidly after the administration of a drug.

Relevance:

Tachyphylaxis results in loss of efficacy of a drug and needs to be taken into account when dosing and prescribing. Strategies that take drug tachyphylaxis into account include, requiring drug-free intervals and giving the drug in combination with other drugs. However, more often, drugs that display tachyphylaxis have limited therapeutic potential for long-term use.

Examples:

Nitroglycerine (and other nitrovasodilators)  

Hydralazine   

Ranitidine  

Linked terms: Tolerance, desensitization

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