Donepezil and hallucinations

Discussion in 'I have a partner with dementia' started by DottieD, Jul 13, 2018.

  1. DottieD

    DottieD New member

    Jul 13, 2018
    My husband tarted taking 5 mg Donepezil and then after a month this was increases to 10 mg. After about 2 weeks on this increased dose he stared to exhibit severe paranoia. He is convinced there are other people around who are “ out to get him”, make him do something bad, poison his food, gas him! When we go out in the car, he thinks we are being followed. He tries not touch anything in case he leaves his imprint! I don’t know whether he has got the Novochok poisoning thing in his head and this may be an issue.

    These symptoms seem to lessen around teatime when he starts to relax a bit and be more like the person he was before he started the drugs. His specialist nurse ( we’ve never seen a doctor since we stared this dreadful journey) has recommended he drops back to the 5 mg dose and will contact me in a couple of weeks.

    As you can imagine, this is frightening and upsetting for my husband and not much fun for me either. Has anyone else experienced anything similar?
  2. nellbelles

    nellbelles Volunteer Host

    Nov 6, 2008
  3. Rosebush

    Rosebush Registered User

    Apr 2, 2018
    Hi, DottieD, yes my OH is always asking me where has everyone gone(it's just the 2 of us and the dog)when I ask him who he doesn't know and just says those people he also blames those people for stealing his things! and for putting all the folded up toilet paper in his pockets and the drawer next to the bed, maybe when we go to the memory clinic on the 24th I will ask them to reduce his Donepezil from 20mg to 5mg.x
  4. karaokePete

    karaokePete Registered User

    Jul 23, 2017
    N Ireland
    Hello @DottieD, welcome to TP from me too.

    When my wife was put on Donepezil she suffered from both visual and auditory hallucinations. Memantine was then added to her meds and that greatly reduced, but didn't solve, the problem.

    I don't know whether or not the donepezil was responsible.
  5. PalSal

    PalSal Registered User

    Some folks do not have to be on meds to have paranoia and hallucinations. Depending on where and how the brain is effected the patient can experience and exhibit these behaviors without drugs so I would definitely talk to the doctor. Perhaps your OH would have these symtoms now without the drugs. My husband definitely has paranoia. He had some hallucinations in his early years. they went away. He used to shout out in the middle of the night at people he saw outside the window. Eventually this went away and now he no longer hallucinates. Perhaps reading a bit about hallucinations from Dr. Olivier Sacks writings and videos on line would be helpful for you. I found Dr. Sacks helpful.
  6. SoAlone

    SoAlone Registered User

    May 19, 2016
    I can only give my experience, my OH was on Donepezil and Memantine and had hallucinations whenever he was having a really bad episode. He has been taken off Donepezil but left on Memantine but these symptoms are still the same. This leads me to feel it is just a progression of the Dementia
  7. Sammyjo1

    Sammyjo1 Registered User

    Jul 8, 2014
    I wonder whether your OH is taking the medication in the morning as you say things improve later on in the day? If so, could you try taking it in the evening. We were recommended that OH took donepezil in the evening just before going to bed as that then helped with any possible side effects occurring during sleep.
  8. Rosebush

    Rosebush Registered User

    Apr 2, 2018
    I give my OH his Donepezil in the morning as if he's in a bad mood I have then got the rest of the day to try again!.
  9. Bunpoots

    Bunpoots Volunteer Host

    Apr 1, 2016
    Similar, but not the same, my dad had delusions which started when his Donepezil was upped to 10mg. He wasn't the least distressed but the people the delusions were about were. It was becoming impossible for any females to be anywhere near him!!

    His dose was reduced from 10mg to 5 and the delusions stopped.

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