The History of Amyl Nitrate and Amyl Nitrite Poppers

by poppers

Poppers are small bottles filled with liquid chemicals called Alkyl Nitrates. There are three different types of poppers, namely: amyl nitrate, butyl nitrate, and isobutyl nitrite. It comes in little glass bottles which users sniffed directly from to get hold of the strong acrid aroma. Poppers are often sold in sex shops, clubs, and gay bars. In addition to that, you might wonder how the poppers came about and when did people start the popping crazethis timeline will walk you through the history of what people called today as the Poppers. Featuring the medical, academic, political, and the commercial history of poppers, you might be quite fascinated on how this medical drug from the past evolves to addictive drug at present. In fact, the history of poppers brings together the threads of national and sexual politics, law, academia, the medical profession, pharmaceuticals, and the Internet mania.

The Historical Timeline of Nitrate and Nitrite Poppers

Medical History

1857 – Amyl nitrite was first discovered and used to ease chest pains or angina. It used to come in small glass capsules that were popped open – hence the term poppers were coined.

1859 The earliest effects of amyl nitrite on the human body surfaced, including flushing of the skin around the neck, and was noticed by doctors in Europe.

1867- Doctors discovered that the vasodilatory effects of amyl nitrite were causing the smooth muscles to relax, that is beneficial to patients with heart pain and angina pectoris.

1959 - Medical professionals claim a century of amyl nitrite usage for medical purposes without fatality of casualty.

1960  Upon FDA approval, poppers became an over-the-counter drug.

1961 Reported cases of recreational usage of amyl nitrite prompted the FDA to reinstate the prescription requirement.

1985 - National Jewish Center for Immunology and Respiratory Diseases claimed to discover a link between the use of nitrites and the risk of contracting HIV.

1987 - New England Journal of Medicine issued a report about AIDS associated with the use of nitrites but conclusions failed to support previous reports on an elevated virus antibody filter or Karposi’s sarcoma.

Academic History

1975 Guy M. Everett of UCSF published Amyl Nitrite (Poppers) as an aphrodisiac.

1979 The first major study of the use and effects of alkyl nitrite as a recreational drug is published.

1982 Thomas Lowry publishes in the British Journal of Sexual medicine his seminal work on the subject of nitrite abuse.Fuming bottles of poppers The History of Amyl Nitrate and Amyl Nitrite Poppers

1983 Two studies are published suggesting a link between poppers and the incidence of Karposi’s sarcoma in AIDS sufferers.

1984  Cover story of Time Magazine probed the abuse of alkyl nitrites associated with AIDS.

1985  AIDS researcher Dr. James Curran declares the use of poppers does not warrant an anti-poppers campaign.

1986  Are Poppers safe? was published by the man who discovered AIDS.

Political History

1980  The Consumer Product Safety Commission investigates the poppers debate.

1981  Hank Wilson attempts to discredit that poppers are safe.

1982  Washington was advised that there is no strong case against the use of poppers as a recreational drug.

1984  US Department of Health and Human Services stated that nitrite abuse does not lead to a medical emergency.

1988  Section 8 of the Consumer Product Safety Act banned the manufacture for sale, distribution in commerce, or importation of various forms of “butyl nitrite.”

1990  Congress amended the law to also ban “volatile alkyl nitrites that can be used for inhaling or otherwise introducing volatile alkyl nitrites into the human body for euphoric or physical effects.”

1990  The bill HR 4774 to ban volatile nitrites was motioned for reconsideration.

1991  Federal law is passed making the sale of nitrites as a recreational inhalant illegal.

Commercial History

1969  First poppers were sold commercially in Los Angeles containing isobutyl nitrite and first brand name was trademarked, Locker Room, by PWD (still on the market).

1977 The Wall Street Journal and Time Magazine claimed that the use of poppers as a recreational drug has become as big as $50 million a year business.

1985  New York banned the sale poppers as drugs.

2002  PWD published to promote the use of poppers and to stimulate poppers e-commerce.

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