What are anticholinergic drugs, and how do they affect incontinence?

According to the Mayo Clinic, anticholinergic drugs work by blocking the action of acetylcholine, a chemical messenger that sends signals to the brain that cause irregular bladder contractions in people with overactive bladder. Even if your bladder isn't full, these bladder contractions will make you feel the need to urinate.

Medications that are anticholinergic include: Oxybutynin (Ditropan XL, Oxytrol), Solifenacin (Detrol), Tolterodine (Detrol), Darifenacin (Enablex) (Vesicare), Fesoterodine, and Trospium (Toviaz). These drugs are typically administered to you in the form of a pill or tablet that you take orally. Oxybutynin is also available as a cream or a skin patch that provides a steady dose of the drug. Anticholinergics' most common side effects are dry mouth and constipation. Note that we are not medical doctors, and this is not to be considered expert medical advice. Please consult with your primary physician for more information before consuming any medications to treat a medical condition.

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