Morphine (icon; MS Contin, MSIR, Avinza, Kadian, Oramorph, Roxanol, Kapanol) is a potent
Potency (pharmacology)
In the field of pharmacology, potency is a measure of drug activity expressed in terms of the amount required to produce an effect of given intensity. A highly potent drug evokes a larger response at low concentrations, while a drug of lower potency evokes a small response at low concentrations...

In medicine, the term opiate describes any of the narcotic opioid alkaloids found as natural products in the opium poppy plant.-Overview:Opiates are so named because they are constituents or derivatives of constituents found in opium, which is processed from the latex sap of the opium poppy,...

An analgesic is any member of the group of drugs used to relieve pain . The word analgesic derives from Greek an- and algos ....

A pharmaceutical drug, also referred to as medicine, medication or medicament, can be loosely defined as any chemical substance intended for use in the medical diagnosis, cure, treatment, or prevention of disease.- Classification :...

 and is considered to be the prototypical opioid
An opioid is a psychoactive chemical that works by binding to opioid receptors, which are found principally in the central and peripheral nervous system and the gastrointestinal tract...

. It was first isolated in 1804 by Friedrich Sertürner
Friedrich Sertürner
Friedrich Wilhelm Adam Sertürner was a German pharmacist, who discovered morphine in 1804.-Biography:He was born on 19 June 1783 in Neuhaus ....

, first distributed by same in 1817, and first commercially sold by Merck
Merck KGaA
Merck KGaA is a German chemical and pharmaceutical company. Merck, also known as “German Merck” and “Merck Darmstadt”, was founded in Darmstadt, Germany, in 1668, making it the world's oldest operating chemical and pharmaceutical company. The company was privately owned until going public in 1995...

 in 1827, which at the time was a single small chemists' shop. It was more widely used after the invention of the hypodermic needle
Hypodermic needle
A hypodermic needle is a hollow needle commonly used with a syringe to inject substances into the body or extract fluids from it...

 in 1857.