Aricept is a drug prescribed to treat all stages of Alzheimer’s disease, a common form of dementia. According to WebMD.com, Aricept is the most common drug treatment of the Alzheimer’s disease type of dementia.
Dementia refers to a group of diseases and conditions that affect the brain. According to MayoClinic.com, Alzheimer’s disease is the leading cause of dementia in people over the age of 65.
Symptoms of dementia may include memory loss, cognitive decline, impaired speech, behavioral disturbances, mood disturbances and hallucinations. Symptoms may progress to the point that patients can no longer care for themselves.
Aricept is the brand name of a drug called donepezil. The Food and Drug Administration approved Aricept for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease in 1996.
Aricept is a cholinesterase inhibitor that inhibits the destruction of a particular neurotransmitter in the brain. Aricept does not cure Alzheimer’s, though it may improve memory, cognition, awareness, and the patient’s ability to function and perform daily tasks.
Aricept is available by prescription in 5 mg and 10 mg tablets, and is typically taken once daily. Aricept is also available in oral dissolving tablets.