Dicyclomine is an anticholinergic medicine that bears antispasmodic properties. Also known as Dicycloverine, this drug is used to relieve symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome.
|Uses||Irritable bowel syndrome|
|Side effects||Dizziness, Dry Mouth, Blurred Vision, Weakness, Nervousness|
|Precautions||Patients having hypertension, hyperthyroidism, and heart-related ailments|
Uses and Benefits of Dicyclomine:
This drug is mainly used to treat, control, prevent and improve the symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome. A few signs and symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome are-
- Abdominal pain
- Alternating Constipation and Diarrhea
- Change in bowel habits
- Passing excessive amount of gas
- Urgency to defecate
- Failure to completely empty bowels
- Unexplained loss of appetite
The above-mentioned symptoms are relieved by the use of Dicyclomine.
Side Effects of Dicyclomine:
This prescription-only medicine must be taken only post consultation with a doctor in order to avoid the occurrence of any unwanted side- effects. A few commonly occurring side effects caused due to the intake of this drug are-
- Dry mouth
- Dry eyes
- Difficulty urinating
- Skin rash
- Stuffy nose
- Abdominal bloating
Other rare but possible side effects that may occur on administering Dicyclomine are-
- Difficulty while making swift eye movements
- Sensitivity to light and sound
- Unusually fast heart rate
- Skin inflammation and allergic reactions
- Mood swings
- Momentary memory loss
- Difficulty in breathing
This is a non-exhaustive list and it is possible for different patients to experience varied side effects.
Common Dosage of Dicyclomine:
- This drug should be taken exactly as prescribed by a registered medical practitioner to avoid any risk associated with its consumption. Most doctors prescribe patients to administer the medicine 4 times a day.
- In the case of a missed dose, it should be taken as soon as it is remembered. However, if it is already time for the next dose, it is advisable to skip the missed dose to avoid any complications arising out of overdosing on the medicine.
- In case of a suspected overdose, it is essential to report the same to the prescribing doctor, especially on experiencing any side effects; to seek immediate medical assistance.
- The course of treatment prescribed by the doctor must be strictly adhered to and the dosage of the durg must not be altered or stopped abruptly.
Composition and Nature of Dicyclomine:
It is an anticholinergic drug that is known to block the release of acetylcholine, which stimulates the muscles.
How to use Dicyclomine?
- This tablet should be swallowed whole with water. It is not advised to administer the tablet with citrus fruit juices as they may cause irritation in the stomach.
- It is not advisable to crush, break or chew the tablet.
- Dicyclomine tablets are generally advised to be taken at least 30 minutes prior to having a meal.
How Dicyclomine works?
Dicyclomine is an antispasmodic and anticholinergic drug that reduces the effect of a chemical known as acetylcholine that is released from nerves to stimulate muscles. They work by blocking the acetylcholine receptors on smooth muscle. It also helps in relaxing the smooth muscles, thereby reducing muscle spasms and pain. The drug also controls excessive tracheal, pharyngeal, and bronchial secretions and, decreases the secretion of gastric acid.
When Dicyclomine is prescribed?
This drug is generally prescribed to treat symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome.
Precaution and Warning – When to Avoid Dicyclomine?
- The patient must refrain from taking any other drug along with Dicyclomine without the consultation of a doctor
- It should not be taken by patients suffering from hypertension as it is known to cause a heightened level of blood pressure.
- Patients suffering from infectious diarrhea are advised against administering this drug as it may lead to worsening of their symptoms.
- This drug must not be administered by pregnant females unless deemed absolutely necessary and prescribed by a doctor.
- Lactating females must not consume the tablet as it passes through the breast milk in large amounts and may hamper the health of the breastfeeding infant.
Interaction with Alcohol-
- It is known to interact with alcohol and produce adverse side effects such as excessive drowsiness among patients. Thus it is advised to avoid the consumption of alcohol during the course of Dicyclomine.
Interaction with diseases-
Dicyclomine must be administered with caution and only post consultation with a doctor by patients suffering from any of the following conditions, illnesses, or diseases-
- Infants under 6 months of age
- Myasthenia gravis
- Nursing mothers
- Obstructive disease of the gastrointestinal tract
- Obstructive uropathy
- Severe ulcerative colitis
- Unstable cardiovascular status in acute hemorrhage
Interaction with drugs-
Dicyclomine is known to interact with the following drugs. Thus, they should not be administered while taking Dicyclomine.
- Tricyclic antidepressants
- Sympathomimetic agents
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors
Medicine that should not be taken with Dicyclomine:
- Antihistamines such as levocetirizine, cetirizine, fexofenadine, loratadine
- Nitrates and nitrites
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs)
- Narcotic pain medications such as meperidine
- Benzodiazepines (clonazepam, diazepam, and lorazepam)
- Antipsychotic drugs such as fluphenazine, chlorpromazine, and perphenazine
- Tricyclic antidepressants such as selegiline, rasagiline, phenelzine, tranylcypromine, amitriptyline, nortriptyline, clomipramine, desipramine, doxepin, imipramine, protriptyline, trimipramine
How to store Dicyclomine?
- Dicyclomine must be stored away from direct heat and sunlight.
- It must be stored in a cool and dry place.
- It must ideally be stored between 15°- 30° C
- It must be kept out of reach of children and pets
- The packaging of the drug must not be tampered with in order to maintain its efficacy on consumption.
1) What is Dicyclomine used to treat?
Ans: Dicyclomine is mainly used to heal, control, prevent and improve symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome.
2) Is Dicyclomine safe for consumption?
Ans: It is safe to use if taken in the exact dosage and duration as prescribed by a medical practitioner.
3) Is this drug available as an over-the-counter medicine?
Ans: This is a prescription-only medicine that can only be purchased post getting a prescription from a doctor. It is not available for purchase over the counter.
4) What is Dicyclomine used for?
Ans: It is mainly used for relieving abdominal cramps and pain associated with irritable bowel syndrome. The drug works by slowing down the natural movement of the abdominal muscles, providing relief from muscle spasms and pain.
5) What are the side effects associated with administering this medication?
Ans: A few of the most commonly occurring side effects associated with the consumption of Dicyclomine are dizziness, dry mouth, skin allergy, nervousness. Different patients may experience different side effects.
6) Does Dicyclomine help in getting relief from nausea?
Ans: It might help in relieving nausea caused due to irritable bowel syndrome but it does not help in getting rid of nausea arising out of any other condition or illness.
7) Is it safe to drive or operate heavy machinery post administering Dicyclomine?
Ans: Dicyclomine is antispasmodic and thus is known to cause drowsiness and sleepiness in most patients. Thus, it is advised to avoid driving or operating heavy machinery while administering Dicyclomine.
8) Can this medicine be used to treat diarrhea?
Ans: Dicyclomine is generally prescribed to patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome. It may help in subsiding symptoms associated with diarrhea caused due to irritable bowel syndrome.
9) Does Dicyclomine help in relieving menstrual cramps?
Ans: No. This does not help in getting relief from menstrual cramps.
10) Can I consume over- the- counter antacids along with Dicyclomine?
Ans: It is not recommended to administer over-the-counter antacids along with Dicyclomine. This is because It makes Dicyclomine less effective by reducing the amount of the drug being absorbed by the body. Unless prescribed by a doctor, the interaction of these two drugs must be avoided.
11) Can I consume alcohol while administering Dicyclomine?
Ans: It is not recommended to consume alcohol while taking a dosage of Dicyclomine. This is because alcohol has the tendency to cause excessive drowsiness in the patient if being taken alongside Dicyclomine which itself has a tendency of causing lethargy and sleepiness.
12) Can Dicyclomine be administered by pregnant females?
Ans: It is a prescription-only medicine that must only be used post consultation from a doctor. It is generally advised for pregnant females to avoid administering this drug. If it is absolutely necessary for the pregnant female to administer this tablet, doctor consultation is very important.
13) Can lactating mothers administer Dicyclomine?
Ans: No. Dicyclomine is not commonly advised to lactating mothers as it has the tendency to pass through the milk in large amounts. This can lead to adverse side effects on the health of the infant.
14) How much time does a dose of Dicyclomine take to show effect?
Ans: Dicyclomine generally shows its effect within an hour of oral administration.
15) Should I take Dicyclomine before or after a meal?
Ans: It is generally advised to administer Dicyclomine at least 30 minutes prior to a meal for maximum efficacy.
16) Is Dicyclomine addictive by nature?
Ans: No. It is not addictive by nature. All addictive drugs in India are classified as schedule X or H and as schedule II-IV in the United States. It is advised to read the packaging label of the drug carefully for all the related information.
17) Can I stop taking Dicyclomine promptly?
Ans: It is advised to consult a doctor for dosage suggestions as per health history and condition, as stopping or starting the medicine promptly can cause adverse side effects.
18) What is the normally prescribed dosage for this drug?
Ans: The generally prescribed dosage for this drug is 4 tablets per day. The dosage may be altered depending on the severity of the patient’s condition.
19) What will happen if I accidentally have an expired dose of Dicyclomine?
Ans: Although there is no reported side effect of consuming an expired dose of this medicine, the efficacy of the drug may be hampered.
20) Is It a pain reliever?
Ans: It is an antispasmodic drug that is used to relieve spasms and gastrointestinal pain in patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome. It is not a conventional pain killer.