Urinary Incontinence Drugs and Medication
There are several drugs that are prescribed for the treatment of urinary incontinence, most of which are known as anticholinergics. One such drug is Ditropan, for urge incontinence. Ditropan contains the active ingredient oxybutynin. This medication works on the cholinergic nervous system’s receptors, which are in charge of squeezing the bladder. Ditropan’s side effects include dry mouth, constipation, headaches, dizziness and memory problems. Another medication consists of an oxytrol patch, which also contains oxybutynin, but is administered topically. As a result it doesn’t cause dry mouth, though the skin may have a reaction to the patch. Other than via a patch, oxybutynin can also be applied topically as a gel. In this form, skin problems are reduced along with mouth dryness, but it’s usually more expensive than pills and patches.
Detrol is another anticholergenic, but its active component is tolterodine. Detrol is as effective as Ditropan, only it also comes in an extended release presentation, and may add constipation to the side effects. Sanctura is a next generation anticholergenic designed to not cross the blood-brain barriers like the other ones do. As such, it doesn’t cause memory lose and other cognitive issues, making it ideal for older people. Additionally, it doesn’t have interactions with other drugs, so it’s safe for people who are taking multiple drugs. Enablex, made with darifenacin, is very similar to Sanctura, as is Vesicare.
There are other drugs that also have a positive effect on urinary incontinence, even though they haven’t been approved by the FDA for that use. Examples of those medications include tricyclic antidepressants like elavil and tofranil, antispasmodic drugs, botox, and alpha-adrenergic agonists like ephedrine. There may be a fine line between these drugs and others that are multipurpose. For instance, alpha blockers like hytrin, cardura, flomax, and uroxatral. These are high blood pressure medications, but can also treat urge incontinence in men with enlarged prostate or other bladder obstructions.
Remember that this article is purely informational, and that you should use only drugs that your doctor has prescribed, and how he or she instructed you to use them. All drugs have side effects, so make sure at least that you’re using them correctly. Keep in mind as well that there are many incontinence products to complement drug treatment; including absorbent underpads, bedpans, plastic urinals, protective underwear for adults, bedwetting alarms, and many more which are available at Discount Medical Supplies.