Hydrolysis, chemical decomposition of a substance by water. The hydrogen and oxygen atoms of water combine with the atoms or groups of atoms of the hydrolyzed substance to form new compounds. Hydrolysis is speeded by heat and pressure or by mixing an acid or base with the water. Hydrolysis is important in the manufacture of many substances. Corn syrup is produced by acid hydrolysis of corn starch. Soap is made by alkaline hydrolysis of fats. Other substances made by hydrolysis are fatty acids, alcohols, and glucose.
If the idea of being completely knocked out by a cocktail of drugs while doctors operate on you freaks you out, you're not the only one. But that's not what anesthesia is all about it -- and it might scare you less if you understand how it works.
If a drugstore is the equivalent of a 7-Eleven where you can pick up ready-made apple pie pockets, then a compounding pharmacy is your corner bakery where an individual tart is made just for you. But are these specialized pharmacies safe?