Anticholinergic toxicity

Revision as of 23:49, 29 January 2012 by Jswartz (talk | contribs) (Created page with "==Background== *Anticholinergic activity: **Meds ***Atropine ***Antihistamines ***Antidepressants (SSRIs, TCAs) ***Antipsychotics ***Muscle relaxants **Plants ***Jimson weed (Dev...")
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)


  • Anticholinergic activity:
    • Meds
      • Atropine
      • Antihistamines
      • Antidepressants (SSRIs, TCAs)
      • Antipsychotics
      • Muscle relaxants
    • Plants
      • Jimson weed (Devil's trumpet)
      • Amanita mushroom

Clinical Features

  • Dry as a bone: anhidrosis (esp axillae, mouth)
  • Hot as a hare: anhydrotic hyperthermia (may become severe w/ agitation)
  • Red as a beet: cutaneous vasodilation
  • Blind as a bat: nonreactive mydriasis (often delayed 12-24hr)
  • Mad as a hatter: delirium; hallucinations, dysarthria, lethargy
  • Full as a flask: urinary retention
  • Tachycardia (HR 120-160) and decreased/absent bowel sounds


  1. Sympathomimetic toxicity
    1. Red, dry skin and absent bowel sounds favors anticholinergic toxicity
  2. Encephalitis
  3. Head trauma
  4. ETOH/sedative withdrawal
  5. Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome (NMS)
  6. Acute psychotic disorder

See Also