Drug trade name- Aricept
Category- cholinesterase inhibitors
Generic name- Donepezil
Introduction and quick information:
There is no permanent cure for Alzheimerâ€™s disease. Also, there is no cure to handle the succession of this disease. But only the symptoms of dementia can be reduced. Â Aricept is used to treat dementia which is caused by Alzheimerâ€™s disease. People suffering from this disease experience constant memory loss and degeneration of nerve cells. Aricept fastens the breakdown of acetylcholine the chemical responsible for learning and memory. According to various researches done on animals Aricept increases the work of acetylcholine. This makes the receptors interacting with brain more responsive and thus you more active.
Is it approved by FDA?
Aricept was approved by FDA in 1996. So there is no need to get worried about the safety of this drug.
Usage and benefits of Aricept:
Aricept is used for the treatment of the symptom of Alzheimerâ€™s disease called dementia. This drug cannot cure the ailment only the symptom of forgetting things and disability to function can be improved. It can take around 12 weeks to work. Sometimes the response time depends on the varying degree of disease from mild to moderate and the person using it.
Side effects of Aricept:
Along with the benefits most of the drugs comes with side effects. Side effects of Aricept are given below:
- Muscle cramps
- Loss of appetite
- Vision problems
- Irregular/slow heartbeat
- Trouble in urination
- Sudden weight loss
- Trouble in breathing
- bloody, black or tarry stool
- blood in cough or vomit
This is not a complete list of the side effects. Immediately a doctor should be called if something unusual or any symptoms amongst this are noticed.
General recommended dosages of Aricept:
Only the recommended dosage prescribed by your doctor should be taken. Do not consume in smaller or larger amounts as it is fatal. The instructions on the label should be followed strictly.
It should be taken once in a day before bedtime. The tablet of Aricept should not be swallowed as a whole. Put it into your mouth and allow it to disintegrate on your tongue. Then water should be consumed. It can be taken with or without meals. Â Do not try to chew or crush the medicine. Hands should be dry to open the blister pack.
In case I miss the Dose?
Missed dose can be taken as soon as you remember. But do not take the skipped dose if itâ€™s the time to take next scheduled dose. You should not take any extra dose to make up for the skipped one.
In case I take overdose?
If an extra dose of medication has been taken you are supposed to contact your doctor immediately. Symptoms of overdosing can include blurred vision, severe nausea, drooling, vomiting, slow heartbeat, sweating, fainting or seizure.
Drug interactions of Aricept:
Before taking Aricept you are supposed to inform your doctor of any type of disease you are suffering form like:
- slow heartbeat
- heart rhythm disorder
- obstructive pulmonary disease
- seizure disorder(epilepsy)
- enlarged prostate
- urination problem
If you have gone through any surgery you should tell the physical advisor. You should not take Aricept if you are allergic to the drug, donepezil or have any other allergies. All the health supplements, non prescribed medicine and herbal medicine should be informed to the doctor. Drugs which include:
- Donatal (atropine and others)
- carbamazepine dicyclomine (Bentyl)
- clidinium (Quarzan)
- Anaspaz,hyoscyamine (hyoscyamine, Cystospaz, Levsin)
- dexamethasone (Decadron)
- glycopyrrolate (Robinul)
- Dilantin methantheline (Provocholine)
- methscopolamine, scopolamine
- Fungal antibiotics like Nizoral, fluconazole, or itraconazole
- propantheline quinidine
This list is not a complete one. You should consult your physical advisor for any further details.
What should I avoid while taking Aricept?
While taking this drug alcohol should not be taken. You should not drive or use machinery as Aricept makes you drowsy and dizzy. Any work which involves alertness should be avoided.
How safe is Aricept for pregnant women or Nursing mothers?
This drug can turn out to be harmful for your unborn baby. You are supposed to tell your doctor if you are planning to conceive. Though it is not clear or proven that this drug passes to infants through motherâ€™s milk but it is advised to stop this drug usage in case you are a feeding mom.
Possible complications and Conditions due to prolonged use of Aricept.
Any drug treatment should not be discontinued abruptly. Slowly the dose of the medicine should be reduced. Any abrupt changes in your lifestyle are not well received by your body and it is always advised to consult your doctor before any such steps. Discontinuing this medicine or continuing it on its own is not wise as all drugs are good in moderate amount and when taken for treatment only, any play with them will make you pay later.
Availability of the drug Aricept:
Aricept can be bought from any government approved medical store. It can also be bought online but only official sites should be used. The online sites give you complete information related to this drug.