Artane (Trihexyphenidyl)

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What is Artane (Trihexyphenidyl) prescribed for?

Parkinson’s Disease affects the nerve cells in the brain that produce dopamine.  And dopamine is a type of neurotransmitter. Your body produces it and your nervous system uses it to send messages between nerve cells. Symptoms for Parkinson’s include rigidity, tremors, and changes in speech and gait.

Artane is used to treat symptoms of Parkinson’s disease or other involuntary movements, due to various side effects of certain psychiatric medications. Trihexyphenidyl, the medication that gives Artane its effect, works by blocking a certain substance, known as acetylcholinel This helps in decreasing the muscle stiffness the patient may be experiencing, along with sweating, the production of saliva and helps improve a patients walking abilities overall.

This medication may be able to stop severe muscle spasms of the back, neck, and eyes that are sometimes caused by psychiatric drugs. It can also decrease other side effects such as muscle stiffness/rigidity

This medication is to be taken by mouth, usually 3 to 4 times a day with meals, and at bedtime, or as directed by your doctor.

Take this medication at least one hour before you take any medication containing magnesium, aluminium or calcium. Allow atleast 1 to 2 hours between doses of Artane and certain other drugs for diarrhea. If you are taking ketoconazole, take this medication at least 2 hours afterwards.

When used for a longer period of time, this medication may not work as well as it once did, and you may require a different dosage from your doctor.

Before taking Artane, it is best to inform you doctor if you are allergic to Trihexyphenidyl, or any other allergies that you may have. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions and other issues.

This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medication, consult your doctor if may have the following; personal or family history of glaucoma, blockage of the bladder/oesophagus/stomach/intestines, severe ulcerative colitis.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: breathing problems (e.g., asthma, emphysema), diarrhea caused by an infection, heart problems (e.g., angina, heart attack, heart failure, fast/irregular heartbeat), high/low blood pressure, intestinal problems (e.g., chronic constipation, ileus, ulcerative colitis), kidney disease, liver disease, mental/mood problems (e.g., anxiety, dementia, psychosis), certain muscle disease (myasthenia gravis), certain nerve disease (autonomic neuropathy), seizure, stomach problems (e.g., acid reflux, hiatal hernia, ulcer), stroke, overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism), problems urinating (e.g., due to enlarged prostate, neurogenic bladder), personal or family history of a substance use disorder (such as overuse of or addiction to drugs/alcohol).

This drug can cause decreased sweating, which could cause a severe rise in your body temperature (hyperthermia). The risk of this serious side effect is greater in hot weather, during vigorous exercise, and/or if you drink alcohol. Drink plenty of fluids and dress lightly while in hot weather and when exercising. If you experience signs of hyperthermia such as mental/mood changes, headache, or dizziness, promptly seek cool or air-conditioned shelter and/or stop exercising, and seek immediate medical attention. Consult your doctor for more details.

This medication does decrease saliva production and can affect your teeth and gums. So it is best to take special care with your dental hygiene and have regular dental check ups

 

Though it helps many people, this medication may sometimes cause addiction. This risk may be higher if you have a substance use disorder (such as overuse of or addiction to drugs/alcohol)

 

Drowsiness, dizziness, constipation, flushing, nausea, nervousness, blurred vision, or dry mouth may occur. These effects usually lessen as your body gets used to the medicine. If any of these effects persist or worsen, contact your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

To relieve dry mouth, suck on (sugarless) hard candy or ice chips, chew (sugarless) gum, drink water, or use a saliva substitute. Tell your doctor right away if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: decreased sexual ability, severe stomach/abdominal pain, difficult/painful swallowing, difficulty urinating, weakness.

Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: chest pain, severe dizziness/fainting, high fever, fast/irregular/slow heartbeat, mental/mood changes (e.g., confusion, hallucinations, memory problems), eye pain/swelling/redness, vision changes (such as seeing rainbows around lights at night).

A serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction include: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

FAQs

 What happens if I suddenly stop taking this medication?

There may be a relapse in symptoms as well as side effects. You should speak your doctor before stop taking this medication.

 

What is the best dosage to take?

The diagnosis with your doctor will be able to determine the best dosage for your treatment. Work with your doctor closely for dosage and dosing schedules.

 

What happens if I miss a dose?

You should take the missed dose as soon you realize you have forgotten. If the forgotten dose is closer to your next scheduled dose, take the next schedule dose to avoid overlapping in dose.

 

What is the best way to store this medication?

This medication is stored at room temperature, and should be kept away from children and pets. Do not throw away this medication in the wastebasket. If you are uncertain how to dispose of this medication speak with your pharmacist for help in safely disposing of this medication.

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