Question 19

Describe the pharmacology of atropine.

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College Answer

Most candidates used a good structure to compose their answer. Better candidates understood that CNS effects occur as atropine is a tertiary amine that crosses the blood brain barrier. The mechanism of action was required. Indications for use should have included bradycardia, organophosphate poisoning, drying of secretions etc. Reasonably extensive details regarding pharmacodynamics was expected, including potential toxic effects. There was limited knowledge regarding pharmacokinetics.