Hyoscin: uses and side effects

Hioscin is a medicine that is also known by other names such as scopolamine or hyoscine butylbromide. It is used to treat pain and discomfort caused by abdominal cramps, menstrual cramps or other spasmodic activity in the digestive system.

For decades it has been one of the widely used drugs to treat nephritic colic pain, alone or associated with metamizol.

It's important to put attention on It is not a medicine to treat pain, such as drugs from the family of NSAIDs, but its effect is aimed at avoiding the cause of pain: muscle spasm itself.

For this reason, This medication is categorized as an antispasmodic drug.. Hyoscin is an alkaloid found in some plants of the genus Duboisia, such as the Duboisia myoporoides.

Mechanism of action: how does hioscin exert the effect on the organism?

Salts derived from hyoscine, such as hyoscine butylbromide, they are an anticholinergic drug with high affinity towards muscarinic receptors They are found in the smooth muscle cells of the digestive tract.

When this medicine interacts with the receptors, Hyoscin triggers a spasmolytic effect. This medicine also has the property of binding with nicotine receptors, thus exerting a lymph node block.

Hyoscin produces an antispasmodic effect in the body. Therefore, it is used in the treatment of abdominal cramps.

Hioscin Indications

Let's see, then, the different indications for which hioscin is indicated, as well as the dosage indicated for each one:

  • Adjuvant in the treatment of peptic ulcer: In children and adults over 12 years of age, a dose of 20 mg is usually given up to 4 times a day. In children between 6 and 12 years, the dose is reduced to 5-10 mg up to 3 times a day. And finally, in infants and children under 6 years of age, a dose of 0.3-0.6 mg / + kg is administered 3 to 4 times a day, the maximum daily dose being 1.5 mg / kg.
  • Astiespasmodic: administered orally in adults with a dose of 20 mg up to 4 times a day.
  • Adjuvant in irritable bowel syndrome and other functional gastrointestinal disorders: As for the previous indication, it is administered in adults orally with a dose of 20 mg up to 4 times a day.

Also read: What you should eat if you have irritable bowel

Pharmacokinetics: what happens to hioscin in the body?

Pharmacokinetics includes the processes of absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion of the drug. In this sense, Hyoscin is an orally administered drug that has low bioavailability.

Bioavailability is the percentage of drug that is available at the site of action after total dose administration. It is estimated that only 1% of the oral dose reaches systemic circulation.

But nevertheless, this fact is compensated by the high affinity they have with muscarinic receptors of the intestinal tract. In this way, the drug can exert its effects locally.

Further, Hyoscine does not cross the blood brain barrierTherefore, it does not produce cholinergic effects on the central nervous system.

Adverse reactions

As with other medications, hioscin can cause some adverse effects. This includes constipation, dry mouth, nausea and dizziness, among others.

Like all medications, Hyoscine is not exempt from producing a series of adverse effects that must be taken into account when under treatment with this medicine.

We understand adverse effects such as all those undesirable and unintended events that occur With the effect of a medication. In this regard, the most common side effects observed include:

  • Constipation.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Difficulty urinating.
  • Sickness.
  • Dizziness
  • Blurry vision.

On the other hand, although not very usual, hypersensitivity reactions may occur who have some of the following symptoms:

  • Itch.
  • Urticaria.
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Difficulty breathing.

All these symptoms can need emergency care and should be treated by a healthcare professional as soon as possible.

Discover: 7 tips for acting in an emergency situation


It is an anticholinergic drug indicated in the treatment of spasms of the gastrointestinal tract, genitourinary and bile duct.

Despite its low bioavailability, when administered orally It has a high tissue affinity for muscarinic smooth muscle receptors. This feature seems to explain the low occurrence of side effects.

However, can produce a series of adverse effects associated with hypersensitivity reactions that must be addressed urgently. Consult with professionals any questions you have about the treatment with hioscin.