Journal of Psychosocial Nursing and Mental Health Services

Clip & Save Drug Chart 

Drugs to Treat Alzheimer’s Disease

Abstract

A handy source of up-to-date information on current medications for psychiatric illnesses

Table

A handy source of up-to-date information on current medications for psychiatric illnesses

Table

Generic (Brand) NameIndicationsContraindicationsPrecautions/Adverse Effects
ACETYLCHOLINESTERASE INHIBITORS
Donepezil HCl (Aricept®, Aricept® ODT)Mild to moderate and severe dementia of the Alzheimer’s typeHypersensitivity to donepezil HCl or to piperidine derivatives.Precautions: Anesthesia with succinylcholine-type muscle relaxation; asthma or obstructive pulmonary disease; cardiac conduction abnormalities; concurrent use of NSAIDs; gastrointestinal disease or history of ulcer disease; seizure history.Adverse effects: Diarrhea, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, muscle cramps, insomnia, fatigue.
Galantamine HBr (Razadyne®, Razadyne® ER [formerly named Reminyl®])Mild to moderate dementia of the Alzheimer’s typeHypersensitivity to galantamine HBr or any excipients used in the formulation.Precautions: Anesthesia with succinylcholine-type muscle relaxation; asthma or obstructive pulmonary disease; bladder outflow obstruction; cardiac conduction disorders; increased mortality rate in mild cognitive impairment; concomitant use of drugs that significantly slow heart rate; concomitant NSAID use; seizures; moderate-severe hepatic impairment; moderate-severe renal impairment; history of ulcer disease.Adverse effects: Weight loss, diarrhea, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headache, bradyarrhythmia, heart failure, esophageal perforation, gastrointestinal hemorrhage, thrombocytopenia, death.
Rivastigmine tartrate (Exelon®, Exelon® patch)Mild to moderate dementia of the Alzheimer’s type (Note. Exelon is also approved for mild to moderate dementia associated with Parkinson’s disease.)Hypersensitivity to rivastigmine, other carbamate derivatives, or other components of the formulation.Precautions: Anesthesia with succinylcholine-type muscle relaxation; asthma or obstructive pulmonary disease; extrapyramidal symptoms; impaired ability to drive or operate machinery; increased adverse effects with low body weight; seizures; nicotine use increases oral drug clearance; peptic ulcers or gastrointestinal bleeding; sick sinus syndrome or other supraventricular cardiac conduction conditions; significant gastrointestinal adverse reactions; urinary obstruction.Adverse effects: Dizziness, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, anorexia, weight loss, cardiac arrest, supraventricular tachycardia, tachyarrhythmia, gastrointestinal hemorrhage, bronchospasm.
Tacrine HCl(Cognex®)Mild to moderate dementia of the Alzheimer’s typeHypersensitivity to tacrine or acridine derivatives; patients previously treated with Cognex who developed treatment-associated jaundice, a serum bilirubin >3 mg/dL, and/or those exhibiting clinical signs or symptoms of hypersensitivity (e.g., rash, fever) in association with alanine transaminase/serum glutamic-pyruvic transaminase elevations.Precautions: Abrupt discontinuation or large dosage reduction may cause sudden decline in cognitive function and behavioral disturbances; asthma; concomitant NSAID use; current or a history of abnormal liver function; anesthesia with succinylcholine-type muscle relaxation; history of bradyarrhythmia, conduction abnormalities, or sick sinus syndrome; seizures; history of ulcer disease.Adverse effects: Diarrhea, indigestion, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, increased liver aminotransferase level, myalgia, ataxia, bradyarrhythmia, heart block, hepatotoxicity, liver failure, seizure.
ERGOT ALKALOID
Ergoloid mesylates (Hydergine®)Alzheimer’s disease, dementiaHypersensitivity to ergoloid mesylate, ergot, or any components; acute or chronic psychosis.Precautions: Multiple potential drug interactions.Adverse effects: Flushing, rash, nausea, vomiting, headache, blurred vision, nasal sinus congestion, bradyarrhythmia, orthostatic hypotension.
N-METHYL-D-ASPARTIC (NMDA) RECEPTOR ANTAGONIST
Memantine HCl (Namenda®, Namenda XR ®)Moderate to severe dementia of the Alzheimer’s typeHypersensitivity to memantine HCl or any excipients used in the formulation.Precautions: Concomitant use of drugs that make the urine alkaline; concomitant use of other NMDA antagonists; genitourinary conditions that raise urine pH; moderate-severe renal impairment; seizure disorder.Adverse effects: Hypertension, constipation, dizziness, headache, pain.
PERIPHERAL VASODILATOR
Isoxsuprine(Vasodilan®)DementiaHypersensitivity to isoxsuprine, recent arterial bleeding, heart disease.Precautions: Bleeding disorders, chest pain, glaucoma, stroke.Adverse effects: Hypotension, tachyarrhythmia, rash, abdominal discomfort, nausea, dizziness, pulmonary edema.

10.3928/02793695-20130306-99

Sign up to receive

Journal E-contents