Acetylcholine is a natural substance produced by the body. It plays an important role in the functioning of the nervous system. Several drugs however, reduce its activity. These drugs are said to have anticholinergic properties. While this effect is sometimes sought, it is often more of an inconvenience. Elderly patients are particularly sensitive to anticholinergic side effects. Anticholinergics are commonly used to treat a variety of conditions (allergies, insomnia, nausea, depression, and urinary disorders).
Anticholinergic side effects vary. Co-administration of several anticholinergic drugs may increase related adverse effects. The most common ones being:
If you experience any of these adverse effects, or if you are concerned about any other symptom, do not hesitate to speak to your doctor or pharmacist. Do not stop taking your medication without consulting a health professional.
Here are a few precaution you can take to avoid the onset of anticholinergic toxicity:
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The patient information leaflets are provided by Vigilance Santé Inc. This content is for information purposes only and does not in any manner whatsoever replace the opinion or advice of your health care professional. Always consult a health care professional before making a decision about your medication or treatment.