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  1. #1
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    Best time to take Aricept?

    When my husband was put on 5mg of Aricept in May, the consultant suggested taking it in the evening, after a meal.

    Instructions that come with the medication itself, suggest that it is best taken at bedtime.

    My husband is managing quite well with remembering to take his Aricept after his evening meal and is having no major side effects from the medication (he does get tired more quickly than he used to, but the consultant says fatigue is not likely to be caused by the aricept as it isn't a sedative). I am not sure why she thinks fatigue is not a symptom as it clearly lists it as a possible side-effect though!

    Anyway, I was just wondering if anybody else administers/takes Aricept at any other time other than bedtime - or if there is a reason they know of as to why bedtime is suggested as the best time on the instructions?

    Memory-wise, taking the Aricept does not appear to have had any affect on my husband's condition (not that we would ever really know I guess).

    It is just playing on my mind a bit that by taking it earlier in the evening with a meal and going to bed later, he is actually sleeping through any period of time when we might otherwise see a definite benefit from taking it?

    Maybe by taking it at bedtime, it would start to 'kick in' around the time he would be getting up in the morning, and therefore show a more noticeable benefit?

    Sorry to ramble - just wondering if anybody else has found a good time of day/night for Aricept or if they been advised to take it at a particular time for a reason?
     

  2. #2
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    Hi
    My husband takes it at bedtime, as per instructions. I don't think individual tablets have any noticeable effect, it's the build up in the system that slows down the progress of Alz. Your husband will most probably increase the dose to 10mg soon, provided there are not any bad side effects, and you should then notice over time an improvement in him. Don't expect miracles though, and it doesn't halt progress, as I said, just slows it down. My husband's score on MMSE went from 21 to 24 on Aricept, but now, although he's still taking it, his score is now 17. This is over 2 1/2 years.
    Jenny
    Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass but learning to dance in the rain
     

  3. #3
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    No, Aricept doesn;t really work that way. This sort of drug increases the amount of certain chemicals in the brain called neurotransmitters which are involved in the processes of memory and thought. People with say Alzheimer's are known to be deficient in these.

    The process is a gradual one and taking the tablet doesn't produce an immediate effect - this is why it can take a number of weeks for the benefits to become clear. It can also take several weeks for the effects on the brain to wear off if the drug has to be stopped.

    So the time of day the drug is taken makes very little difference - the drug is also designed to maintain a given level in the body over a 24 hour period, which is why many people only need take one tablet per day. It becomes a case of maintaining the neurotransmitters at their new higher level. In fact, stopping the drug for a day or two probably makes little difference either. These chemical levels are not really subject to rapid change.

    It doesn;t work like other drugs - for example, insulin, which has very rapid effects and the timing of which has to be precise.

    I believe that it is often advised to give the drug last thing at night because some people can experience mild side effects, for example nausea, and they will simply sleep through these.

    If it helps, we were never advised over that and my dad took his Aricept first thing. But then he tolerated it very well with no ill effects
     

  4. #4
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    When my husband took Aricept the CPN suggested we ignore the instructions to take it at night and he take it at breakfast. She said some people had disturbed nights because of hallucinations which could be avoided by taking it in the morning. I think my husband did benefit from taking this medication but as it is supposed to slow the progress of the disease you do noy have a cloned husband not taking it to compare with. Friends did notice he seemed a bit better and I had not told them about the medication but again it may just have been our getting used to managing things which made him appear improved.
    He has now stopped Aricept and is on Ebixa and this is definitely helping with his anxiety.
    Tre
     

  5. #5
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    Thanks everyone for your help with this and explaining how Aricept builds up gradually - it was very helpful.

    My husband won't ever be put on a higher level of Aricept because he has a slow heart rate. As it is, his heart rate is borderline with 5mgs so 10mgs is out of the question.

    I've chatted everything through with my husband and he has decided he wants to just experiment with taking it at bedtime for a few weeks to see if that helps his 'fatigue' at all. It seems that he always gets tired within a couple of hours of taking the tablet, so instead of taking it around 7pm after his evening meal and feeling 'zonked out' by 9pm - he is going to just leave it until a bit later.

    We accept it probably won't make any difference, but it's worth playing around with to see if that side of things can be improved at least. Presumably, if some people take it at night in order to sleep through any nausea side effects, then maybe the same can be said of the extreme bouts of fatigue he seems to get.

    He knows that some people start to have vivid dreams when they take it late at night but hopefully, as he is on the lowest dose, it won't do this to him. If it does we'll have to rethink the situation.

    Thanks again everyone for you input - it's been much appreciated
     

  6. #6
    Hiya, Mum takes her 10mg of Aricept in the morning before breakfast with her other meds, Omeprazole for reflux and blood pressure tablet. Her CPN said this is fine because she likes a couple of vodkas at night to help her sleep. Although we would rather she didn't have alchohol, what's the point in stopping her at age 81 when it is one of the few pleasures she has left and we do monitor how much she has.
     

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Number3daughter View Post
    Hiya, Mum takes her 10mg of Aricept in the morning before breakfast with her other meds, Omeprazole for reflux and blood pressure tablet. Her CPN said this is fine because she likes a couple of vodkas at night to help her sleep. Although we would rather she didn't have alchohol, what's the point in stopping her at age 81 when it is one of the few pleasures she has left and we do monitor how much she has.
    hiya, my dad takes 10mg in the morning, he hasn't had any ill effects from taking it then.
     

  8. #8
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    For 11 years husband took his dose of Aricept in the morning - as we were instructed by the doctor. Now he is on Exelon capsules he has one in the morning and one at bedtime.
    Izzy
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    Robert Louis Stevenson
     

  9. #9
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    Smile Quick update

    Thought I'd just add a quick update to this.

    Hubby has been taking his Aricept just before bedtime for a couple of weeks now and I can confirm, that in his case at least, altering the time of day he takes the medication has definitely made a difference.

    Instead of getting zonked out early in the evening, he is back to staying up until 11.30pm-midnight before turning in for the night.

    It's great for both of us because we get to spend more time together, enjoying each other's company, chilling out to a good film, listening to music etc - and at the end of it all he gets a really good night's sleep - and wakes up feeling quite refreshed in the mornings.

    I know things can change, but for now, this is working really well
     

  10. #10
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    When my mother started taking Aricept I asked a pharmacist friend why at bed time. She explain that 'some' people will experience dizzyness and if they are in bed it is less likely that there will be a falls issue. Makes sense to me.
     

  11. #11
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    Hi.
    I was prescribed Aricept to be taken in the mornings. I have been on it for 10 weeks and have had 2 hallucinations only ( in the same week). Although one was puzzling and the other terrifying I wondered if they'd been triggered by outside factors eg worries. I don't plan to have any more! but will monitor in other possible influences should they return. Has anyone else found this?
     

 

 

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