Generic Name: memantine (meh MAN teen)
Brand Name: Namenda, Namenda XR
What is memantine?
Memantine reduces the actions of chemicals in the brain that may contribute to the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.
Memantine is used to treat moderate to severe dementia of the Alzheimer's type.
Memantine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
What is the most important information I should know about memantine?
Follow all directions on your medicine label and package. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all your medical conditions, allergies, and all medicines you use.
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking memantine?
You should not use memantine if you are allergic to it.
To make sure memantine is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:
epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
kidney disease; or
a bladder or kidney infection.
FDA pregnancy category B. This medication is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.
It is not known whether memantine passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
How should I take memantine?
Follow all directions on your prescription label. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Do not crush, chew, break, or open an extended-release capsule. Swallow it whole.
Take this medicine with a full glass of water.
Memantine can be taken with or without food.
The liquid (oral solution) form of this medication comes with patient instructions for safe and effective use. Follow these directions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
Do not mix the oral solution with any other liquids.
Rinse the empty oral syringe with clean water and allow it to air dry after every use.
It is important to use memantine regularly to get the most benefit. Get your prescription refilled before you run out of medicine completely.
Your doctor will need to check your progress while you are using memantine.
Store memantine at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the liquid medicine bottle tightly closed with the cap provided. Do not store the bottle with the oral syringe in it.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
What should I avoid while taking memantine?
Memantine can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.
Memantine side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop using memantine and call your doctor at once if you have:
cough, chest tightness, fever, trouble breathing;
chest pain, fast heart rate;
sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body;
lack of coordination;
fainting or seizure (convulsions);
urinating less than usual or not at all;
pale skin, easy bruising or bleeding, unusual weakness; or
increased blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, trouble concentrating, chest pain, numbness, seizure).
Common side effects may include:
nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, loss of appetite;
dizziness, tired feeling;
swelling in your hands or feet;
easy bruising or bleeding, unusual weakness;
redness or swelling of or around your eyes; or
urinating more than usual.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
Memantine dosing information
Usual Adult Dose for Alzheimer's Disease:
Initial dose: 5 mg orally once a day, then titrated upwards by 5 mg per week
Maintenance dose: 5 mg once a day up to 10 mg twice a day
Maximum dose: 20 mg per day
Initial dose: 7 mg orally once a day, then titrated upwards by 7 mg per week
Maintenance dose: 7 mg once a day up to 28 mg once a day
Maximum dose: 28 mg orally once a day
Approved indication: For use in the treatment of moderate to severe dementia of the Alzheimer's type.
What other drugs will affect memantine?
Other drugs may interact with memantine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now and any medicine you start or stop using.
More about memantine
- Memantine extended-release capsules
- Memantine solution
- Memantine tablets
- Memantine (Advanced Reading)
Related treatment guides
Where can I get more information?
- Your pharmacist can provide more information about memantine.
- Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
- Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 2.08. Revision Date: 2013-10-02, 12:27:02 PM.