Question about acetylcholinesterase and anticholinergics

  1. Are they the same thing? I don't recall learning about acetylcholinesterase inhibitors until starting NCLEX questions. If they are not the same, could someone explain what they are/the difference? Thanks!
  2. Visit jc2012 profile page

    About jc2012

    Joined: Feb '12; Posts: 2; Likes: 2


  3. by   AgentBeast
    Acetylcholinesterase is the enzyme responsible to breaking down acetlycholine. If you inhibit that enzyme you essentially keep acetylcholine in the synapse longer.

    Anticholinergics essentially block the effects of acetylcholine in the CNS and PNS.

    Basically acetlycholinesterase inhibitors increase the ammount of acetlycholine increasing it's effect. Anticholinergics block the effect of acetylcholine.
  4. by   SummitRN
    The good ones (*stigmine) are used to treat myasthenia gravis or gloucoma.

    The bad ones... think organophosphates (nerve gas and pesticide) SLUDGE which you treat with anticholinergics like atropine and pralidoxime.
  5. by   learning-everyday

    I agree with you. Medical term is very confusing . The way I remember if it end with " ase" --> it is an enzyme that acts as an catalyze to breakdown chemical bonds.