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Cholinergic Toxicity

In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2020 Jan–.

Cholinergic Toxicity

Erica L. Lott et al.


Cholinergic toxicity is caused by medications, drugs, and substances that stimulate, enhance or mimic the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is the primary neurotransmitter of the parasympathetic nervous systems. Acetylcholine stimulates muscarinic and nicotinic receptors to cause muscle contraction and glandular secretions. Cholinergic toxicity occurs when too much acetylcholine is present in the receptor synapse leading to excessive parasympathetic effects.

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