Dicyclomine is used to treat a certain type of intestinal problem called irritable bowel syndrome. It helps to reduce the symptoms of stomach and intestinal cramping. This medication works by slowing the natural movements of the gut and by relaxing the muscles in the stomach and intestines. Dicyclomine belongs to a class of drugs known as anticholinergics/antispasmodics.
This medication must not be used in children younger than 6 months old because of the risk of serious side effects.
How to use Bentyl
Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually 4 times a day. To reduce your risk of side effects, your doctor may direct you to start this medication at a low dose and gradually increase your dose. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully.
If you are using the liquid form of this medication, carefully measure the dose using a special measuring device/spoon. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose. Mix the dose of liquid with an equal amount of water before taking it.
Antacids lower the absorption of dicyclomine. Do not take this medication at the same time as antacids. If you are taking an antacid, take it after meals and take dicyclomine before meals.
The dosage is based on your age, medical condition, and response to treatment.
Do not increase your dose or take this drug more often without your doctor's approval. Your condition will not improve any faster and the risk of serious side effects may increase.
If you suddenly stop using this medication, you may have withdrawal symptoms (such as dizziness, sweating, vomiting). To help prevent withdrawal, your doctor may lower your dose slowly. Withdrawal is more likely if you have used dicyclomine for a long time or in high doses. Tell your doctor or pharmacist right away if you have withdrawal.
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). Take this medication exactly as prescribed to lower the risk of addiction. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.
Dizziness, drowsiness, lightheadedness, weakness, blurred vision, dry eyes, dry mouth, nausea, constipation, and abdominal bloating may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
To relieve dry mouth, suck (sugarless) hard candy or ice chips, chew (sugarless) gum, drink water, or use a saliva substitute. To relieve dry eyes, consult your pharmacist for artificial tears or other eye lubricants.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor right away if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: decreased sweating, dry/hot/flushed skin, fast/irregular heartbeat, loss of coordination, slurred speech, mental/mood changes (such as confusion, hallucinations, agitation, nervousness, unusual excitement), difficulty urinating, decreased sexual ability.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before taking dicyclomine, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: personal or family history of glaucoma (angle-closure type), enlarged prostate, problems with urination due to a blocked urinary tract, other stomach/intestinal problems (such as slow gut, blockage, ulcerative colitis, infection, little/no stomach acid, ileostomy/colostomy patients with diarrhea), overactive thyroid, heart problems (such as coronary artery disease, angina, congestive heart failure, fast/irregular heartbeat, heart problems due to severe bleeding), high blood pressure, heartburn problems (such as acid reflux, hiatal hernia, esophagus problems), certain nervous system problem (autonomic neuropathy), personal or family history of a substance use disorder (such as overuse of or addiction to drugs/alcohol), myasthenia gravis, liver problems, kidney problems.
This drug may make you dizzy or drowsy or blur your vision. Alcohol or marijuana (cannabis) can make you more dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs alertness or clear vision until you can do it safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Talk to your doctor if you are using marijuana (cannabis).
This medication may make you sweat less, making you more likely to get heat stroke. Avoid doing things that may cause you to overheat, such as hard work or exercise in hot weather, or using hot tubs. When the weather is hot, drink a lot of fluids and dress lightly. If you overheat, quickly look for a place to cool down and rest. Get medical help right away if you have a fever that does not go away, mental/mood changes, headache, or dizziness.
Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially drowsiness, confusion, unusual excitement, constipation, fast heartbeat, and urination problems. Drowsiness and confusion can increase the risk of falling.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
This medication passes into breast milk and may have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. The manufacturer recommends that you do not breast-feed while using this drug. Consult your doctor for more details.
See also the How to Use section.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
Some products that may interact with this drug include: potassium tablets/capsules, drugs that are affected by slowed gut movement (such as pramlintide).
Dicyclomine may affect the absorption of other products such as levodopa, certain azole anti-fungal drugs (ketoconazole, itraconazole), slowly-dissolving forms of digoxin, among others. If you are taking either ketoconazole or itraconazole, take it at least 2 hours before dicyclomine.
Many other drugs that also cause dry mouth and constipation may interact with anticholinergics/antispasmodics such as dicyclomine. Tell your doctor or pharmacist about all the products you take, including: other anticholinergic drugs (such as atropine, glycopyrrolate, scopolamine), other antispasmodic drugs (such as clidinium, propantheline), belladonna alkaloids, certain drugs used to treat Parkinson's disease (such as benztropine, trihexyphenidyl), certain drugs used to treat irregular heart rhythms (such as disopyramide, quinidine), MAO inhibitors (isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue, moclobemide, phenelzine, procarbazine, rasagiline, safinamide, selegiline, tranylcypromine), phenothiazines (such as chlorpromazine), tricyclic antidepressants (such as amitriptyline).
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking other products that cause drowsiness including alcohol, marijuana (cannabis), antihistamines (such as cetirizine, diphenhydramine), drugs for sleep or anxiety (such as alprazolam, diazepam, zolpidem), muscle relaxants, and narcotic pain relievers (such as codeine).
Check the labels on all your medicines (such as allergy or cough-and-cold products, diet aids) because they may contain ingredients that cause drowsiness or a fast heartbeat. Ask your pharmacist about using those products safely.
This medication may interfere with certain laboratory tests (including gastric secretion tests), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: large pupils, hot/dry skin, fever, severe dizziness, severe thirst, difficulty swallowing, mental/mood changes (such as confusion, unusual excitement), fast/irregular heartbeat, muscle weakness, inability to move (paralysis), slowed breathing, fainting, seizures.
Do not share this medication with others.
Management of digestive disorders may include lifestyle changes such as stress reduction programs, exercise, stopping smoking, and dietary changes, in addition to medication. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about lifestyle changes that might benefit you.
Keep all medical appointments so that your doctor can periodically monitor your progress and check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature below 86 degrees F (30 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.Information last revised April 2019. Copyright(c) 2019 First Databank, Inc.
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