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altropine competitive antagonist of acetylcholine

Atropine is a competitive antagonist of acetylcholine which binds to the muscarinic receptor in order to inhibit the parasympathetic stressed system. It causes a reversible blockade of the action of acetylcholine and it can be triumph over by increasing the amount of acetylcholine at receptor sites of the effectors body organ (e. g. utilizing the anticholinesterase real estate agents which inhibit the destruction of acetylcholine). Atropine is an alkaloid or an extremely poisonous drug derived from a plant called atropia belladonna, also known as fatal nightshade. "Belladonna" is Italian term this means beautiful woman. In the Renaissance, female used the juice of berries of atropia belladonna to dilate pupils as it was perceived as more attractive.

Pharmacological effects

    1. Eye -Atropine acts in the attention to obstruct the action of acetylcholine, comforting the cholinergically innervated sphincter muscles of the iris. This leads to dilation of the pupil (mydriasis). The cholinergic stimulation of accommodative ciliary muscle of the zoom lens in the attention is also obstructed. This ends up with paralysis of accommodation (cycloplegia). Besides, the elevation of intraocular pressure (IOP) occurs when the anterior chamber is narrow. It will further increase IOP in glaucoma patients since it will obstruct evacuation of aqueous humor by the Schlemm channel. Atropine is thus contraindicated in these patients. Another effect of antimuscarinic drugs is to lessen lacrimal secretion which produces dryness in sight.

Atropine has a slower onset and more continuous effect in eyeball as maximum mydriatic impact occurs around 30 to 40 minutes and maximum cycloplegia calls for several hours. Mydriasis usually can last 7 to 12 days and cycloplegia may persist for two weeks or longer.

    1. Heart - The vagus (parasympathetic) nerves that innervate the heart release acetylcholine (ACh) as their most important neurotransmitter to decrease the heart rate. ACh binds to muscarinic receptors (M2) that are located on cells composed of the sinoatrial (SA) and atrioventricular (AV) nodes.

Atropine has a effective and prolonged influence on the center muscle. It inhibits the result of abnormal vagal nerve activation on the heart and soul like sinus bradycardia and AV nodal stop (wait in the conduction of electronic impulses at the AV node of the heart and soul) by binding to muscarinic receptors to be able to avoid ACh from binding to and activating the receptor. Thus, atropine boosts the heartrate and raises conduction velocity as it very effectively prevents the consequences of parasympathetic nerve activity on the heart and soul. You can find little effects on blood pressure since most level of resistance blood vessels don't have cholinergic innervations. Small doses of atropine used may reduce the heartrate, yet, large doses used definitely triggers increasing of the heart rate.

  1. Central stressed system - Atropine has nominal stimulant results on the central anxious system, especially medullary centers, and a slower, longer-lasting sedative effect on the brain. Low doses atropine may produce mild restlessness and higher doses may produce agitation and hallucination. With still much larger doses, excitement is followed by depression leading to circulatory collapse and respiratory failing after a period of paralysis and coma.
  2. Respiratory tract - The parasympathetic stressed system regulate bronchomotor shade and secretionary glands of the airway. Since atropine can be an antagonist muscarinic medication, it inhibits the secretion of nasal area, mouth area, pharynx and bronchi, and therefore dries the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract. And it also relaxes bronchial simple muscle, producing bronchodilation and decreasing airway resistance. The result is more important in patients with airway disease like asthma.
  3. Gastrointestinal tract - Motility and secretions of gastrointestinal tract are dropped by atropine. GI easy muscle motility is damaged from the tummy to the digestive tract by decreasing tone, amplitude and regularity of the peristaltic contractions. However, the gastric secretion is merely just a little reduced.
  4. Genitourinary tract - The antimuscarinic action of atropine relaxes even muscle of the ureters and bladder wall in order to decrease the normal firmness and amplitude of contractions of the ureters and bladder. Atropine hasn't significant effect on the uterus.
  5. Sweat glands - Small dosages of atropine inhibit the experience of sweating glands, producing hot and dried on your skin. Sweating may be sufficiently frustrated and this will elevate the body temps if using the larger doses in adult or at high environmental temperature ranges. For the newborn or children who are given large dosages or even regular doses could cause "atropine fever".



Atropine is speedily and well consumed from the gastrointestinal tract, mucosal membrane, conjunctival membranes, and to some degree through intact skin area when given by oral road, solution, ointment or injection route (directly switches into muscle or vein). Pharmacological activity of paranteral supervision is 2-3 times greater than enteral way.


Atropine is speedily cleared from the blood vessels and is distributed throughout the body. It crosses the blood-brain hurdle and placenta. Maximum plasma concentrations of atropine are reached within 30 minutes. The duration of action of atropine given by general route would be around 4 -6 time.


After administration, atropine disappears swiftly from the bloodstream with a half-life of 2 hours. The half-life of atropine is slightly shorter in females than men. Then it is metabolized in the liver organ by oxidation and conjugation to give inactive metabolites.


The drug's influence on parasympathetic function declines quickly in every organs except the attention. Effects on the iris and ciliary muscle persist for more than 3 days and nights. About 50% of the dosage is excreted within 4 hours and 90% in 24 hours in the urine, about 30 to 50% as unchanged drug.

Therapeutic uses

As preanaesthetic medicationts

Atropine is utilized to block two effects in particular during anaesthesia, secretions in the respiratory system in response to the frustrating characteristics of some inhalant anaesthetics, and bradycardia (slowing of the center) which accompanies most anaesthetics because of the block of muscarinic receptors in the heart and soul. Overall, atropine can decrease the risk of airway blockage and improve the heart beat when anaesthetic medication is going to be used.

Ophthalmological uses

Topical atropine can be used as a cycloplegic (temporarily paralyze the accommodation) so that as a mydriatic (dilate the pupils) for accurate way of measuring of refractive problem in patients. A second use is to prevent synechiae (adhesion) creation in uveitis and iritis. After local supervision by means of ophthalmic solution, the starting point of atropine is around thirty minutes and it results last for very long: dilation of pupil can persist several days.

Cardiovascular disorders

Injection of atropine is employed in the treatment of bradycardia (an extremely low heart rate) credited to extreme vagal firmness on the SA and AV node. It accelerates the cardiac rate by reduced amount of vagal shade and suppression of reflex bradycardia during arterial hypertension. In addition, atropine is also used key for sinus node dysfunction (unacceptable atrial rates) and symptomatic second-degree heart and soul block (irregularities in the electric powered conduction system of the center).

Respiratory disorders

Parenteral atropine can be used as a preoperative medication to suppress bronchiolar secretions when anaesthetics are used. It could be used to take care of asthma, chronic bronchitis and persistent obstructive pulmonary disease.

Gastrointestinal disorders

Atropine is hardly ever used to take care of pepti-ulcer nowadays. Atropine can offer some comfort in the treating common traveler's diarrhea (irritable bowel motion). It is combined with an opioid antidiarrheal medication to be able to discourage maltreatment of the opioid agent.

Urinary disorders

Atropine can be used to relieve bladder spasm after urologic surgery and then for dealing with urinary urgency caused by modest inflammatory bladder disorder.


It can be an increased and profuse perspiration. Atropine can reduce the secretion of sweat glands by inhibiting the Ach binds to the muscarinic receptors.

Cholinergic poisoning

By preventing the action of ACh, atropine can also be utilized as an antidote for organophosphate poisoning brought on by inhibition of cholinesterase and nerve gases. The atropine serves as a powerful blocking agent for the excess ACh but does nothing to change the inhibition of cholinesterase. Troops, who are likely to be attacked with chemical weapons often hold autoinjectiors with atropine and obidoxime which is often quickly injected in to the thigh. It is the only known antidote for VX nerve gas. A number of the nerve gases attack and destroy acetycholinesterase (an enzyme hydrolyzes ACh to provide choline), therefore the action of acetylcholine becomes extended. Therefore, atropine can be used to depress the effect of ACh.

Parkinson's disease

Atropine is used to take care of the sign of Parkinson such as drooling perspiration rigidity and tremors. However, with the wide array of uses and aspect effects that atropine has, it's been replaced by other medications that are more effectively in dealing with Parkinson's.

Adverse effect

Atropine and its own possible side-effect can affect individual people in a variety of ways. The following are some of the medial side results that are regarded as associated with atropine. Not absolutely all the patients employing this antimuscarinic medicine will experience the same results. These effects are intensified as the dosages are increased.

  • General - chest pain, increased thirst, weakness, dehydration, sense hot, injection site reaction, fever.
  • Eye - dilation pupil, pupil inadequately reactive to light, photophobia, blurred vision, decreased accommodation, decreased contrast sensitivity, lowered visual acuity, dry eyes or dry conjunctiva, acute position closure glaucoma, irritated eyes, sensitive conjunctivitis or blepharoconjunctivitis, heterophoria, red eyes due to surplus blood circulation (hyperaemia).
  • Psychiatric - hallucination, mental confusion, agitation, restlessness, nervousness, enthusiasm especially in older, fatigue.
  • Central stressed system - headache, nervousness, dizziness, drowsiness, muscle twitching, excessive activity, coma, difficult concentrating, insomnia, amnesia, ataxia (lack of the ability to coordinate muscular motion).
  • Cardiovascular - tachycardia (increasing in heartbeat), serious myocardial infarction, cardiac dilation, atrial arrhythmias, paradoxical Bradycardia (if low does indeed Atropine used), asystole (absence of heart beat), increased blood circulation pressure or decreased blood pressure.
  • Respiratory - poor respiration, inhaling and exhaling difficulty, pulmonary edema, breathing failure.
  • Gastrointestinal - nausea, abdominal area pain, vomiting, reduced bowel sounds, lowered food absorption, postponed gastric emptying, reduction of salivary secretions, lack of taste, bloated sense.
  • Genitourinary - urinary retention, urine urgency, bed-wetting, difficult in micturation.
  • Dermatologic - dry mucous membrane, dry warm pores and skin, flushed skin, dental lesion, anhidrosis (lack of sweating), dermatitis, rash, hyperthermia (elevated of body's temperature)

Overdose and Treatment

Widespread paralysis of parasympathetically innervated organs can characterize serious over medication dosage with atropine. Dry mucous membranes, generally dilated and nonresponsive pupils, tachycardia, fever, hallucination and flushed pores and skin are mental and neurological symptoms which may last 48 time or longer. Severe intoxication, breathing depression, blood circulation pressure declines, coma, circulatory collapse and loss of life might occur with over dose of atropine.

Overdoses of atropine are generally treated symptomatically by given small dosages slowly and gradually intravenously of physostigmine (1-4mg in adults and 0. 5-1 mg in children).


Atropine is contraindicated in patients with

  • Known hypersensitivity to the drug
  • Glaucoma, especially angle closure glaucoma
  • Bladder throat obstruction
  • Myasthenia gravis
  • Severe ulcerative colitis
  • Gastric ulcer
  • Abdominal distention with decreased peristalsis and/or intestinal obstruction
  • A background of prostatic hyperplasia

Special Consideration

  • Extreme care in patients with Down Syndrome
  • Found in seniors patients
  • Used during motherhood or breastfeeding
  • Limited utilization in newborn infant
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