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1. Terodiline, an anticholinergic drug with calcium antagonist properties, is associated with QT prolongation and ventricular arrhythmias. It is not known if oxybutynin, a drug with a similar pharmacological profile, causes QT prolongation. ECGs were obtained before and at least 4 weeks after commencement of oxybutynin (mean daily dose 7.6, range 2.5-10 mg), in 21 elderly (mean age 75, range 58-88 years) patients treated for urinary incontinence. Heart rate, (mean +/- s.d.) 74 +/- 11 vs 69 +/- 11 beats min-1, -6 (-13,2), before vs during oxybutynin therapy, mean difference (95% confidence intervals); PR interval, 168 +/- 27 vs 156 +/- 27 ms, -11 (-26,3); QTc 454 +/- 27 vs 447 +/- 31 ms1/2, -9 (-23,5), and QTc dispersion, QTc max-QTc min, 68 +/- 24 vs 63 +/- 26 ms1/2, -1 (-15,14) were all unaltered by oxybutynin therapy. The lack of an effect on resting heart rate suggests that oxybutynin has little anticholinergic action at cardiac M2 receptors at usually administered doses. Oxybutynin therapy is not associated with QTc interval prolongation and is unlikely to produce ventricular arrhythmias.

Original publication




Journal article


Br J Clin Pharmacol

Publication Date





73 - 75


Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Electrocardiography, Heart Rate, Humans, Mandelic Acids, Middle Aged, Parasympatholytics, Urinary Incontinence