Essay on Motion Sickness and The Use of Scopolamine

Essay on Motion Sickness and The Use of Scopolamine

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Scopolamine is a prescription medication usually prescribed in the form of a transdermal patch. It is used to prevent symptoms associated with motion sickness, including nausea and vomiting. It has several other clinical uses as well. Scopolamine is commonly prescribed before travel on ships and airplanes when motion sickness is anticipated. This paper will explore several studies that have identified specific actions of scopolamine, including its effect when used at sea, its effect on cognitive performance, and its effect on patients experiencing myocardial infraction.
Scopolamine is an alkaloid drug derived from plants in the Solanaceae family. This family of plants are called nightshade plants, and some examples are henbane and jimson weed. The chemical formula of scopolamine is C17H21NO4. Brand names include Scopoderm and Transderm-V. The medication works as an antagonist at muscarinic acetylcholine receptors by blocking the acetylcholine-mediated nerve impulses that travel to the inner ear. The inner ear is where the sense of balance is regulated in humans. Acetylcholine (Ach) is a major transmitter found in the autonomic ganglia that allows neurons to communicate for sensory input and muscle control. Muscarinic receptors are vital in the control of the central nervous system (CNS) and also parasympathetic control of the heart, lungs, and gastrointestinal processes. By blocking the action of these receptors, a result is possible impaired central and peripheral nervous system functioning. Inhibiting this functioning could also cause tachycardia, which can lead to myocardial infarction (heart attack) or angina (chest pain).
Scopolamine is also used as a pupil dilator, in pain management, and to treat symptoms ass...

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...of Myocardial Infarction." Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association 88 (1993): 353-57. AHA Journals. Web. 20 Nov. 2013. .

Ebert, U., and W. Kirch. "Scopolamine Model of Dementia: Electroencephalogram Findings and Cognitive Performance." European Journal of Clinical Investigation 28 (1998): 944-49. Web. 24 Nov. 2013.

Price, N.M., M.D., L.G. Schmitt, R.N., J. McGuire, Ph.D., J.E. Shaw, Ph.D., and G. Trobough, M.D. "Transdermal Scopolamine in the Prevention of Motion Sickness at Sea." Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics 29 (1980): 414-19. Web. 26 Nov. 2013.

"Scopolamine Transdermal Patch: MedlinePlus Drug Information." U.S National Library of Medicine. U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d. Web. 20 Nov. 2013. .

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