Solifenacin | Side Effects, Dosage, Uses & More
Advertisement

Generic Name:

solifenacin, Oral tablet

All Brands

  • VESIcare
SECTION 1 of 4

Highlights for solifenacin

Oral tablet
1

Solifenacin is an oral drug that’s used to treat symptoms of overactive bladder. These symptoms include a strong need to urinate with leaking or wetting accidents, a strong need to urinate right away, and urinating often.

2

This drug may cause dizziness and drowsiness. You shouldn’t drive, use machinery, or do similar tasks that require alertness until you know how solifenacin affects you.

3

Common side effects include dry mouth, constipation, urinary tract infection, and blurred vision.

4

The standard starting dose is 5 mg taken by mouth one time per day. If needed, your doctor may increase your dose to 10 mg taken once per day.

5

If you have kidney disease, liver disease, or are taking certain medications, your doctor may limit your dose to 5 mg per day.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Other conditions

You shouldn’t take this drug if you have urinary retention, gastric retention, or uncontrolled narrow-angle glaucoma. Use this drug with caution if you have the heart problem QT prolongation (irregular heart rate).

Swelling (edema)

In rare cases, this drug may cause swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. If swelling occurs and makes it hard for you to breathe, call 9-1-1 or go to the emergency room right away.

Drug features

This drug is a prescription drug. It’s available as an oral tablet.

This drug is a brand-name drug. It’s not available as a generic drug.

Why it's used

This drug is used to treat symptoms of overactive bladder. These symptoms include:

  • a strong need to urinate with leaking or wetting accidents
  • a strong need to urinate right away
  • urinating more often than usual

How it works

This drug belongs to a class of drugs called urinary antagonists. A class of drugs refers to medications that work similarly. They have a similar chemical structure and are often used to treat similar conditions.

When you bladder fills with urine, it expands. Once it’s fully expanded, it sends a message to your brain telling it you’re ready to urinate.

More Details

How it works

This drug belongs to a class of drugs called urinary antagonists. A class of drugs refers to medications that work similarly. They have a similar chemical structure and are often used to treat similar conditions.

When you bladder fills with urine, it expands. Once it’s fully expanded, it sends a message to your brain telling it you’re ready to urinate. When you urinate, the muscles in your bladder contract, which starts a flow of urine. When you have overactive bladder, your muscles contract before your bladder fully expands, which causes frequent urges to urinate. This drug works to interact with chemicals in your body that cause the bladder muscles to contract. This decreases your sudden need to urinate, having to urinate often, and leaking in between bathroom visits.

Advertisement
SECTION 2 of 4

solifenacin Side Effects

Oral tablet

Most Common Side Effects

The most common side effects that occur with solifenacin include:

  • dry mouth

  • constipation

  • urinary tract infection

  • blurred vision

If these effects are mild, they may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. If they’re more severe or don’t go away, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Serious Side Effects

If you experience any of these serious side effects, call your doctor right away. If your symptoms are potentially life-threatening or if you think you’re experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1.

  • heat exhaustion or heat stroke. This is more likely to occur if you live in a hot environment and are taking solifenacin. Symptoms include:

    • decreased sweating
    • dizziness
    • tiredness
    • nausea
    • increase in body temperature (fever)
  • shortness of breath or chest pain

  • swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat that makes it hard for you to breathe

Pharmacist's Advice
Healthline Pharmacist Editorial Team

This medication can affect your central nervous system. This could lead to side effects such as headache, confusion, hallucinations, and drowsiness when starting or increasing your dose of this drug. You shouldn’t operate heavy machinery or drive until you know how this medication will affect you.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history.
SECTION 3 of 4

solifenacin May Interact with Other Medications

Oral tablet

This drug can interact with other medications, herbs, or vitamins you might be taking. That’s why your doctor should manage all of your medications carefully. If you’re curious about how this drug might interact with something else you’re taking, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Note: You can reduce your chances of drug interactions by having all of your prescriptions filled at the same pharmacy. That way, a pharmacist can check for possible drug interactions.

Alcohol interaction

The use of drinks that contain alcohol can make your bladder symptoms worse. This means that solifenacin may not work as well. If you drink alcohol, talk to your doctor.

Medications that might interact with this drug

Antifungal drugs

These drugs can increase the amount of solifenacin in your body. This may lead to more side effects. Your dose of solifenacin shouldn’t be higher than 5 mg per day if you’re also taking one of these drugs.

These drugs include:

  • itraconazole
  • ketoconazole
  • voriconazole

Antibiotics

These drugs can increase the amount of solifenacin in your body. This may lead to more side effects. Your dose of solifenacin shouldn’t be higher than 5 mg per day if you’re also taking one of these drugs.

These drugs include:

  • clarithromycin
  • telithromycin

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) medicines

These drugs can increase the amount of solifenacin in your body. This may lead to more side effects. Your dose of solifenacin shouldn’t be higher than 5 mg per day if you’re also taking one of these drugs.

These drugs include:

  • atazanavir
  • indinavir
  • ritonavir
  • saquinavir

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking.

People with bladder problems

You shouldn’t use this drug if you have urinary retention. Use this drug with caution if you have other problems emptying your bladder. This may increase your risk of urinary retention.

People with stomach problems

You shouldn’t use this drug if you have gastric retention. Use this drug with caution if you have delayed or slow emptying of your stomach. This may increase your risk of gastric retention.

People with narrow-angle glaucoma

Use this drug with caution if you have an eye disorder called narrow-angle glaucoma. If you have uncontrolled narrow-angle glaucoma, you shouldn’t use this drug at all.

People with liver issues

This drug is processed by your liver. If you have liver problems, more of the drug may stay in your body longer, putting you at risk for side effects. Use this medication with caution. Your doctor may lower your dose and may check your liver function during treatment.

People with kidney issues

This drug is processed by your kidneys. If you have kidney problems, more of the drug may stay in your body longer, putting you at risk for side effects. Use this medication with caution. Your doctor may lower your dose and may check your kidney function during treatment.

People with an irregular heart rate

Use this drug with caution if you have QT prolongation (irregular heart rate).

Pregnant women

This drug is a category C pregnancy drug. That means two things:

  1. Research in animals has shown adverse effects to the fetus when the mother takes the drug.
  2. There haven’t been enough studies done in humans to be certain how the drug might affect the fetus.

Tell your doctor if you’re pregnant or plan to become pregnant. This drug should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

Women who are breast-feeding

It isn’t known if this drug passes into breast milk. If it does, it may cause side effects in a child who is breast-fed.

Talk to your doctor if you breast-feed your baby. You may need to decide whether to stop breast-feeding or stop taking this medication.

For children

The safety and effectiveness of this drug in children younger than 18 years of age hasn’t been established.

Allergies

This drug can cause a severe allergic reaction. Symptoms include:

  • trouble breathing
  • swelling of your face, lips, throat, or tongue
  • hives

Call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency room if you develop these symptoms.

Don’t take this drug again if you’ve ever had an allergic reaction to it before. Taking it again could be fatal (cause death).

SECTION 4 of 4

How to Take solifenacin (Dosage)

Oral tablet

All possible dosages and forms may not be included here. Your dose, form, and how often you take it will depend on:

  • your age
  • the condition being treated
  • how severe your condition is
  • other medical conditions you have
  • how you react to the first dose

What are you taking this medication for?

Overactive bladder (OAB)

Brand: Vesicare

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 5 mg and 10 mg
Adult dosage (ages 18 years and older)

5 mg taken by mouth once per day. Your doctor may increase your dose to 10 mg taken once per day if needed.

Child dosage (ages 0–17 years)

This medicine hasn’t been studied in children and shouldn’t be used in children younger than 18 years.

Special considerations

Kidney problems: If you have severe kidney disease, your dose shouldn’t be higher than 5 mg per day.

Liver problems: If you have moderate liver disease, your dose shouldn’t be higher than 5 mg per day. If you have severe liver disease, you shouldn’t use this drug.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this list includes all possible dosages. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always to speak with your doctor or pharmacist about dosages that are right for you.
Pharmacist's Advice
Healthline Pharmacist Editorial Team

This drug comes with serious risks if you don't take it as prescribed.

If you miss a dose

If you miss a dose of this drug, skip that dose and take your next dose as scheduled the next day. Don’t take two doses of this drug on the same day. This could cause toxic side effects.

If you take too much

You could have dangerous levels of the drug in your body. You may have the following symptoms:

  • blurred vision
  • dilated pupils
  • tremors
  • loss of consciousness

If you think you’ve taken too much of the drug, act right away. Call your doctor or local Poison Control Center, or go to the nearest emergency room. 

How to tell this drug is working

You can tell this drug is working if your symptoms of overactive bladder improve. You may no longer have a strong need to urinate or a need to urinate more often.

This drug is used for long-term treatment.

Important considerations for taking this drug

This drug must be stored at the right temperature

  • Store this drug in room temperature. Keep it at 77°F (25°C). It may be stored briefly between 59°F (15°C) and 86°F (30°C).
  • Keep this drug away from light.
  • Keep it away from high temperature.
  • Keep your drugs away from areas where they could get wet, such as bathrooms. Store this drug away from moisture and damp locations.

Travel

When traveling with your medication:

  • Always carry your medication with you or in your carry-on bag.
  • Don’t worry about airport x-ray machines. They can’t hurt this medication.
  • You may need to show airport staff your pharmacy’s label to clearly identify the medication. Keep the original prescription label with you when traveling.
  • Don’t leave this medicine in the car, especially when the temperature is hot or freezing.

Clinical monitoring

Before starting and during treatment with this medication, your doctor may check your:

  • liver function
  • kidney function 

Insurance

Many insurance companies will require a prior authorization before they approve the prescription and pay for this drug.

Are there any alternatives?

There are other drugs available to treat your condition. Some may be more suitable for you than others. Talk to your doctor about possible alternatives.

What does the pill look like?

Showing - out of 2

Show Sources

Content developed in collaboration with University of Illinois-Chicago, Drug Information Group

Medically reviewed by Creighton University, Center for Drug Information and Evidence-Based Practice on September 8, 2015

Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up-to-date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or other healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement