A yellowish volatile synthetic liquid used medicinally as a vasodilator. It is rapidly absorbed by the body on inhalation, and is sometimes used for its stimulatory effects.
- Chemical formula: C5H11NO2.
- In 1857, inhalation of amyl nitrite, a volatile liquid and known vasodilator, was found to relieve anginal pain; however, the duration of action was brief and the dosage difficult to control.
- Inhalation of amyl nitrite, as well as isobutyl nitrite, purportedly enhances sexual pleasure and produces euphoria.
- Some analogous alkyl nitrites, such as amyl nitrite, are known sensitizers in humans.
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