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63 yr old woman, early onset Alzheimer's diagnosed July 2013. Prescribed Aricept 5 mg and Namenda. Found Namenda made me agitated and angry so quit. 10 mg Aricept and serious side effects. While waiting for new doctor to take over past neurologist's care, have adjusted meds myself to keep the memory help - which is astounding - and lessens side effects which includes severe muscle cramps in legs, water retention, ankle and hand swelling, back pain, increased blood pressure, heart palpitations. I now take 1/2 of the 5 mg tablet in morning and am still retaining benefits with reduced side effects. Aricept restored my ability to read and gave me energy and focus I have not had in 3 years. Lower dose on most meds always works better for me.
11 users found this comment helpful.
Review by Dementia patient (taken for 6 months to 1 year):
I noticed a big difference once starting this medication. I do Suduko puzzles everyday. Eventually, I stopped taking this medicine because of leg cramps that kept me up at night, and I could not do Suduko as well. Once I went back on the medicine, I could resume my puzzles. My pharmacist gave me Hylands for leg cramps and now I sleep better and am not so foggy. Very happy.
My mom has been on Aricept for 5 months, 5 mg. Mom has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. Medication has helped her be more alert, making longer conversations, better effect. Short memory exists but her condition had not worsened. Will see neurologist to determine to increase medication to 10 mg. Mom's condition has been stable and we are hoping to slow the disease.
11 users found this comment helpful.
In 2000, my mother suffered persistent diarrhea with this medicine, could not get rid of it until the medicine was stopped. My mother-in-law had the same problem this year. She also had delusions and paranoia, which have been almost eliminated by a medicine she started a month ago, Risperdone. If you try Risperdone, start with lowest dose, it makes her very sleepy and a side effect is depressed heart rate, can be dangerous. It also stimulates appetite, which was good for Mom, she was losing 1-2 pounds per week but the doctor cautioned against excess weight gain and concerns regarding diabetes. We're going to try 100 mg niacin, I've read that it can help cognitive function. Even when they don't know your name, they know when they are loved. Show them.
48 users found this comment helpful.
I have been on this medication for 4 months now. I am 55 with early-onset Alzheimer's. I have noticed a significant improvement. I do not feel so much anymore as if I am walking around in a fog. I have not had any side-effects at all from this medication. I am hopeful that it will stave off a rapid progression of this disease.
81 users found this comment helpful.
Two years ago my Mom used 5mg of Aricept for one month, she became almost a total zombie taking this medicine. Would not get out of bed, her mind was a lot worse than before she started taking it. A month ago she was put on 10mg of Aricept and after two doses was taken to the hospital, she was totally out of control and knew nothing of what was going on. It is not for everyone.
79 users found this comment helpful.
My husband was diagnosed 10/21/2009 with moderate Alzheimers. He was started on Namenda for 4-6 weeks and then Aricept, 10mg. Before he took the medicines, he was roaming at night and hallucinating. After he took the medicines for a while, he stopped hallucinating, he wasn't confused as often, he can carry through a normal day, including eating out with friends 5 days a week, helping take care of the grandchildren, 6 & 10, use his riding mower, and yesterday, 8/17/10 he re-spooled his weedeater. He hasn't been able to do that for a long time.
At this time he's suffering with long-time constipation and has just had a positive hemocult (stool test). A colonoscopy is next. Could this be a side-effect?
46 users found this comment helpful.
My mother was on this as well for 6 weeks when the delusions started. The pharmacist said that it would take a little while to get out of her system. I did see a major improvement in her short term memory! Maybe the drug makers could alter the recommended dosage to once a week since this seems to be a build up before we see the delusions happen. I didn't want to take her off of it because of the improvement, but I did not want her to continue to wander out of the house because of the voices she was hearing.
51 users found this comment helpful.
After brain surgery my vocabulary and speech became very bad. A doctor suggested Aricept. I didn't notice any improvement in my speech but my kids did. Apparently it works for different things. Because of the surgery my short term memory is out. Long term memory is still there.
49 users found this comment helpful.
My father has been on Aricept for 6 weeks and has become delusional especially at night. My mother stopped the medication because he wasn't sleeping at all at night and thus neither was she. I don't see this listed as a side effect and don't know if the change in my father's behavior is related to the Aricept or just increasing severity of his dementia. Will have to wait and see if things get better now that he's off the drug.
143 users found this comment helpful.
Mom was having memory problems and was prescribed this drug. By the 4'th week on the drug, she was having delusions. It's been 6 months and the delusions seem to be reduced, but not gone.
Caffeine seems to add to the problem so we are reducing her coffee. She also seems to get better when she exercises (walking).
108 users found this comment helpful.
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