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Starting Aricept off label
Posted: Tuesday, June 2, 2015 7:57 PM
Joined: 4/7/2015
Posts: 482

DH w new diagnosis vascular neuro cognitive impairment (vascular dementia) is starting Aricept 5 mg. His testing did not show Alz. His scores showed moderate to severe deficit in memory ( visual and verbal immediate and delayed). Most other scores average (yay!!)
Anyone here on Aricept for same? I've read up on it. DH will have to weigh side effects (if he has any) with benefits/etc. We are hopeful.
I wanted to post here since y'all are walking the "same"path as my DH. He is 54. I read these threads to learn what he may be feeling. Our family is doing Best Practices.

Lisa Ramey
Posted: Wednesday, June 3, 2015 4:49 PM
Joined: 6/20/2014
Posts: 160

Dear Michelle O,
I don't have your hubby's medical problems but generic Aricept made me feel great but the side effects were horrible. Muscle cramps, loose stools. Oh my I even went up to 10mg and it was just to much. I reckon I'll just let my dementia play itself out. The other dementia meds were the same and or cost prohibitive
I miss the alertness I had with Aricept but my arthritis and fibromyalgia don't miss Aricept on little bit.
Hope this helps
Lisa Ramey

Posted: Wednesday, June 3, 2015 5:18 PM
Joined: 4/7/2015
Posts: 482

Thanks Lisa. We will see how it goes. He "hates pills". Don't we all. 😟
Mimi S.
Posted: Wednesday, June 3, 2015 7:35 PM
Joined: 11/29/2011
Posts: 7027

5 mg is the usual first dose. Alzheimer's is one type of dementia. Vascular is a different dementia. I hope your doctor is a specialist is the treatment of vascular dementia. If not, you might want to look further.

for GI upsets, i switched to a lactose free diet. What a relief.

Nightmares or other sleep disturbances, take in the morning. Don't driver or operate machinery until you see if it causes drowsiness.

Do have hubby join the folks here on the Younger Onset Board. You will find other caretakers, or we prefer care-partners on the Spousal Board.

Posted: Sunday, June 14, 2015 6:14 PM
Joined: 5/10/2015
Posts: 29

Hi Michelle, just for the record, I also had terrible muscle cramps with Aricept, even at 5 mg. However, my neurologist suggested that I try tonic water and that took care of it. However, she did tell me never to drink more than 8 oz of tonic water as it may upset the heart rhythm. I can even drink 2 oz of tonic water now and it helps.
Posted: Sunday, June 14, 2015 6:33 PM
Joined: 12/5/2011
Posts: 795

Hi MichelleO,

Welcome to the Message Boards. We're happy you've found us but sad for the circumstances that brought you here.

You're husband may do fine with Aricept. Many people do. I was one of the unlucky people. The doctor switched me to an Exelon patch and I am doing great.

I know you husband dx is different than mine YOAD. Always check with your doctor.

Good luck. Welcome to the boards (Both of you). The beginning is very rough. Hold on tight to each other.

We're here to help. Both of you will need to post. There are boards for caregivers, spouses, people like your hubby (diagnosed with dementia early).

We do have a toll free 24 help line 800-272-3900.

Please post anytime. Welcome to OUR family. You are Not alone. We're here!

Peace and hope,