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Buscopan – Patient Information

This page contains information on Buscopan which is a drug used in some MRI and CT scans. Further information about Buscopan is available in the manufacturer’s patient information leaflet – please ask us if you would like a copy.

What is Buscopan?

Buscopan is a common anticholinergic drug that inhibits paraysmpathetic nerve impulses. This inhibits smooth muscle contraction which causes your peristalsis in your bowl to relax. This allows your abdominal/ pelvic area to have less contractions/ movement when the scan is taking place. A radiologist will discuss with you If you require to have Buscopan when you come for your scan. You can also call and speak to a radiographer before your scan on 0207 464 4317.

How is it given?

Buscopan is injected into one of your veins via a needle or a cannula (a soft, thin plastic tube) before or during your scan. The cannula is inserted through your skin into a vein using a needle. Once the cannula is in place the needle is removed, leaving the small, thin plastic tube in the blood vessel. This should be comfortable and will only be in place until your scan is finished.

Are there any side effects?

Buscopan is not suitable for everybody. The radiographer or radiologist will decide if it is appropriate for you. The most common side effects are dry mouth, dizziness, blurred vision and an increased heart rate. These only last for about 30-45mins and will be over by the time your leave the department. More severe effects are eye pain/ redness, tachycardia, hypotension and anaphylaxis, however these are uncommon but do occur. If one of these was to occue during your scan the hospital has the team and the medicine to help with this.

Serious allergic reactions are rare, however please seek immediate medical attention if you have any of the following having left the hospital:

  • swelling of the face, mouth, hands, feet or throat
  • difficulty in breathing or swallowing
  • fainting
  • coughing/wheezing/sneezing
  • eye irritation
  • rash/hives/itchy red skin

Contact us

If you have any questions or concerns, or if you experience any of the symptoms listed above, please please contact your GP or go to your local Emergency Department (A&E) for advice for urgent queries or the MRI department for non-urgent queries on 0207 467 4317

If you have any questions or concerns about your medicines, please speak to the staff caring for you.

Your comments and concerns

For support or advice please speak to your consultant or the imaging department.  To make a complaint, contact the complaints department need to add contact details.

Language and accessible support services

If you need an interpreter or information about your care in a different language or format, please get in touch.