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benztropine (cont.)

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking benztropine (Cogentin)?

You should not take this medication if you are allergic to benztropine, or if you are also taking a medication called pramlintide (Symlin).

To make sure you can safely take benztropine, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • glaucoma;
  • heart disease, a heart rhythm disorder, history of heart attack;
  • high or low blood pressure;
  • asthma, emphysema, or other breathing disorder;
  • kidney or liver disease;
  • a nerve disorder;
  • a muscle disorder such as myasthenia gravis;
  • seizures;
  • enlarged prostate, urination problems;
  • overactive thyroid;
  • mental illness or dementia;
  • stomach ulcer, reflux disease, hiatal hernia; or
  • ulcerative colitis, history of bowel obstruction, or other intestinal disorder.

It is not known whether benztropine will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.

It is not known whether benztropine passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Benztropine should not be given to a child younger than 3 years old.

How should I take benztropine (Cogentin)?

Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Drink plenty of liquids while you are taking benztropine.

Benztropine is sometimes given up to 4 times daily, at meals and at bedtime. If you take benztropine only once per day, it may be best to take the medication at bedtime. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Benztropine can be taken with food to lessen stomach upset.

Your mouth may feel dry while taking benztropine. To prevent or relieve dry mouth, suck on a piece of sugar-free hard candy, chew sugar-free gum, drink water, chew on ice chips, or use a saliva substitute.

Dry mouth may lead to gum disease or cavities. Brush and floss your teeth regularly and see a dentist for routine check-ups while you are taking benztropine.

It may take up to 3 days before your symptoms improve. Keep using the medication as directed and tell your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse.

Do not stop taking this medication without first talking to your doctor. Stopping suddenly may make your condition worse. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely.

Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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