What is Buscopan IBS Relief?
Buscopan is an over-the-counter treatment that contains the active ingredient hyoscine butylbromide - a medication that is used to treat abdominal pain and the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
What is Buscopan used for?
The treatment is used to alleviate symptoms commonly associated with IBS, including stomach cramping, abdominal pain and gastrointestinal spasms.
How does Buscopan work?
In people with IBS, the stomach appears to be especially sensitive to a number of different factors, including food, drink, emotional stress and anxiety. When people with IBS go through stressful events or eat the wrong foods, it can result in painful cramps and spasms in the bowel. This can cause a number of troublesome symptoms, including:
- Abdominal discomfort
Hyoscine butylbromide, the active ingredient in Buscopan, belongs to a family of medicines known as antispasmodics. It binds to muscarinic acetylcholine receptors - receptors that stimulate smooth muscle contractions in the bowels - and blocks their effect. This reduces the abdominal spasms that cause the symptoms of IBS.
How long does Buscopan take to work?
Buscopan works very quickly after it is taken. Painful cramps caused by IBS should begin to subside within 15 minutes of taking the treatment.
How should I take Buscopan?
Buscopan tablets should be taken on an as-needed basis, such as when you begin to feel abdominal pain or any other symptoms you experience during IBS attacks. Adults and children 12 years and older can take two tablets four times a day. You should not give Buscopan IBS Relief tablets to children under the age of 12. You should also not take Buscopan for longer than two weeks without speaking to a doctor.
Who can’t take Buscopan?
Buscopan may not be suitable for some people. You should not take Buscopan if you have:
- A very enlarged bowel
- Angle-closure glaucoma (Buscopan can increase the pressure in your eye and make glaucoma worse)
- Myasthenia gravis
- Had an allergic reaction to Buscopan or any other medicines in the past
You must tell your doctor before taking Buscopan if you:
- Are pregnant, trying to get pregnant or breastfeeding
- Are unable to digest some sugars (Buscopan tablets contain sugars)
- Have heart problems or a very fast heart rate
- Have difficulty urinating
- Have an intestinal obstruction
- Have a fever
- Have hyperthyroidism
- Have digestive conditions such as gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD), severe constipation or ulcerative colitis
You should speak to your doctor for safety before taking Buscopan if you:
- Have recently had bloody stools
- Look pale and feel tired
- Have recently lost your appetite and weight
- Have had nausea or vomiting
- Are experiencing vaginal bleeding or discharge
- Think you could have food poisoning
Does Buscopan have side effects?
Buscopan can cause side effects in some people. Common side effects that happen in more than one in 100 people include:
- Dry mouth
- Blurred vision
- Rapid heart rate
In rare cases, more serious side effects can occur. Stop taking Buscopan and contact your GP immediately if you:
- Get a painful red eye and lose your vision
- Have difficulty urinating
How should I store Buscopan?
Buscopan should be stored in a dry, cool environment that does not exceed 25°C.
Always read the patient information leaflet before commencing treatment.
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Content last updated: 21 Feb 2023