Scopolamine (Page 3 of 6)

7.4 Interaction with Gastric Secretion Test

Scopolamine will interfere with the gastric secretion test. Discontinue scopolamine transdermal system 10 days prior to testing.


8.1 Pregnancy

Risk Summary

Available data from observational studies and postmarketing reports with scopolamine use in pregnant women have not identified a drug associated risk of major birth defects, miscarriage, or adverse fetal outcomes. Avoid use of scopolamine transdermal system in pregnant women with severe preeclampsia because eclamptic seizures have been reported after exposure to scopolamine (see Data).

In animal studies, there was no evidence of adverse developmental effects with intravenous administration of scopolamine hydrobromide revealed in rats. Embryotoxicity was observed in rabbits at intravenous doses producing plasma levels approximately 100 times the levels achieved in humans using a transdermal system.

The estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage for the indicated population is unknown. All pregnancies have a background risk of birth defect, loss, or other adverse outcomes. In the U.S. general population, the background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage in clinically recognized pregnancies is 2% to 4% and 15% to 20%, respectively.


Human Data

Eclamptic Seizures In published case reports, two pregnant patients with severe preeclampsia were administered intravenous and intramuscular scopolamine, respectively, and developed eclamptic seizures soon after scopolamine administration [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)].

Animal Data

In animal reproduction studies, when pregnant rats and rabbits received scopolamine hydrobromide by daily intravenous injection, no adverse effects were observed in rats. An embryotoxic effect was observed in rabbits at doses producing plasma levels approximately 100 times the levels achieved in humans using a transdermal system. Scopolamine administered parenterally to rats and rabbits at doses higher than the dose delivered by scopolamine transdermal system did not affect uterine contractions or increase the duration of labor.

8.2 Lactation

Risk Summary

Scopolamine is present in human milk. There are no available data on the effects of scopolamine on the breastfed infant or the effects on milk production. Because there have been no consistent reports of adverse events in breastfed infants over decades of use, the developmental and health benefits of breastfeeding should be considered along with the mother’s clinical need for scopolamine transdermal system and any potential adverse effects on the breastfed child from scopolamine or from the underlying maternal condition.

8.4 Pediatric Use

Safety and effectiveness in pediatric patients have not been established. Pediatric patients are particularly susceptible to the adverse reactions of scopolamine; including mydriasis, hallucinations, amblyopia and drug withdrawal syndrome. Neurologic and psychiatric adverse reactions, such as hallucinations, amblyopia and mydriasis have also been reported.

8.5 Geriatric Use

Clinical trials of scopolamine transdermal system did not include sufficient number of subjects aged 65 years and older to determine if they respond differently from younger subjects. In other clinical experience, elderly patients had an increased risk of neurologic and psychiatric adverse reactions, such as hallucinations, confusion, dizziness and drug withdrawal syndrome [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2, 5.5)]. Consider more frequent monitoring for CNS adverse reactions during treatment with scopolamine transdermal system in elderly patients [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)].

8.6 Renal or Hepatic Impairment

Scopolamine transdermal system has not been studied in patients with renal or hepatic impairment. Consider more frequent monitoring during treatment with scopolamine transdermal system in patients with renal or hepatic impairment because of the increased risk of CNS adverse reactions [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)].


9.1 Controlled Substance

Scopolamine transdermal system contains scopolamine, which is not a controlled substance.

9.3 Dependence

Termination of scopolamine transdermal system, usually after several days of use, may result in withdrawal symptoms such as disturbances of equilibrium, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, sweating, headache, mental confusion, muscle weakness, bradycardia and hypotension. These withdrawal symptoms indicate that scopolamine, like other anticholinergic drugs, may produce physical dependence. The onset of these symptoms, generally 24 hours or more after the transdermal system has been removed, can be severe and may require medical intervention [see Warnings and Precautions (5.5)].


The signs and symptoms of anticholinergic toxicity include: lethargy, somnolence, coma, confusion, agitation, hallucinations, convulsion, visual disturbance, dry flushed skin, dry mouth, decreased bowel sounds, urinary retention, tachycardia, hypertension, and supraventricular arrhythmias. These symptoms can be severe and may require medical intervention.

In cases of toxicity remove the scopolamine transdermal system. Serious symptomatic cases of overdosage involving multiple transdermal system applications and/or ingestion may be managed by initially ensuring the patient has an adequate airway and supporting respiration and circulation. This should be rapidly followed by removal of all transdermal systems from the skin and the mouth. If there is evidence of transdermal system ingestion, endoscopic removal of swallowed transdermal systems, or administration of activated charcoal should be considered, as indicated by the clinical situation. In any case where there is serious overdosage or signs of evolving acute toxicity, continuous monitoring of vital signs and ECG, establishment of intravenous access, and administration of oxygen are all recommended.

The signs and symptoms of overdose/toxicity due to scopolamine should be carefully distinguished from the occasionally observed syndrome of withdrawal [see Warnings and Precautions (5.5)]. Although mental confusion and dizziness may be observed with both acute toxicity and withdrawal, other characteristic findings differ: tachyarrhythmias, dry skin, and decreased bowel sounds suggest anticholinergic toxicity, while bradycardia, headache, nausea and abdominal cramps, and sweating suggest post-removal withdrawal.

If over-exposure occurs, call your Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222 for current information on the management of poisoning or overdosage.


Scopolamine transdermal system is designed for continuous release of scopolamine following application to an area of intact skin on the head, behind the ear. Each system contains 1.5 mg of scopolamine base. Scopolamine is (αS)-α-(hydroxymethyl)benzeneacetic acid (1α,2β,4β,5α,7β)-9-methyl-3-oxa-9-azatricyclo[,4 ]non-7-yl ester. The molecular formula is C17 H21 NO4 and its structural formula is:

Scopolamine Structural Formula

Scopolamine has a molecular weight of 303.35 and a pKa of 7.55-7.81. The scopolamine transdermal system is a circular, 1.8 cm2 film with four layers. Proceeding from the visible surface towards the surface attached to the skin, these layers are: (1) a backing layer of peach-colored polyethylene/polyester film printed with brown ink; (2) a solid matrix drug reservoir layer of silicone adhesive, scopolamine and povidone; (3) a microporous polypropylene membrane; and (4) an adhesive formulation of silicone adhesive, povidone and scopolamine. A protective, oversized release liner of fluoropolymer-coated polyester, which covers the adhesive formulation layer, is removed before the system is used. The brown ink contains acrylic polymers, carbon black, iron oxides (red and yellow), polydimethylsiloxane, polyethylene wax, polytetrafluoroethylene, polyvinylpyrrolidone, sodium dioctyl sulfosuccinate and triethanolamine.

Scopolamine transdermal systems are packaged with an additional piece of protective film covering the system within each pouch. This piece of protective film is removed and discarded at the time of use.

Cross section of the system:

Cross section of the system
(click image for full-size original)

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