Anticholinergic effects – Nursing assessments and considerations

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Anticholinergic medications, such as belladonna, atropine sulfate, and ipratropium block the activity of acetylcholine. These medications could be associated with altered taste perception, dry mouth, heartburn (Painful and burning sensation in chest because of gastroesophageal reflux), urinary retention, impotence, blurred vision, nasal congestion, and dysphagia, which is a condition in which swallowing becomes painful or difficult. It is important to note that impotence is also an adverse effect of
(1) Diuretic medications,
(2) Testosterone inhibitors, such as finasteride
(3) Anti-hypertensive medications, such as prazosin.

and nasal congestion is also an adverse effect of certain anti-impotence medications, such as sildenafil and tadalafil.

In case of anticholinergic effects, nurses may consider good mouth care, sugarless lozenges for dry mouth, safety measures for changes in vision, void before taking medication, and educate patients that some of the adverse effects of anticholinergic medication diminish with time.

Source of Information:

NCLEX-PN Content Review Guide: Preparation for the NCLEX-PN Examination (Kaplan Test Prep) – *

*affiliate link

Usman Zafar Paracha

Usman Zafar Paracha is a sort of entrepreneur. He is the author of "Color Atlas of Statistics", and the owner of an Android game "Faily Rocket."

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