Effects of Donepezil on Emotional/Behavioral Symptoms in Alzheimer's Disease Patients
J Clin Psychiatry 2000;61:487-492
© Copyright 2014 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
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Background: This open-label study examined the effects of the reversible cholinesterase inhibitor donepezil on emotional/behavioral symptoms in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) patients.
Method: Patients were diagnosed as having
probable/possible AD by National Institute of Neurological and
Communicative Disorders and Stroke/Alzheimer's Disease and
Related Disorders Association (NINCDS/ADRDA) criteria. This study
used the CERAD Behavior Rating Scale for Dementia (CBRSD) and its
subscales to evaluate a group of 25 AD patients treated with
donepezil. Dosage was increased at 4 months for most patients
from 5 to 10 mg q.h.s. Analysis of variance was used to compare
scores over a period of 12 months. These patients were also
compared, using t tests, to a reference group that had received
no donepezil or other anticholinesterase.
Results: Donepezil administration was associated
with improvement in Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and
CBRSD total scores at 3-month evaluation (p <= .05). CBRSD
depression and behavioral dysregulation scores improved
transiently at 4 months (p <= .05). MMSE, CBRSD total, CBRSD
depression, and CBRSD behavioral dysregulation scores returned to
baseline levels at 12 months, in contrast to the reference group,
whose MMSE and CBRSD total scores worsened minimally over the 12
Conclusion: Donepezil has a mildly positive
effect on emotional/behavioral symptoms in AD in addition to its
effect on cognitive function.