Donepezil Pharmacology

On this episode I discuss the pharmacology of donepezil.

Donepezil is an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor. In dementia, that is a deficiency in acetylcholine and donepezil helps preserve this neurotransmitter.

Donepezil can cause weight loss, GI upset, and diarrhea. This is an important monitoring parameter in our dementia patients.

There is the possibility for donepezil to cause bradycardia and insomnia. Keep an eye out for these adverse effects as they can and do happen in real practice.

Anticholinergics are notorious for blunting the effects of donepezil. We must look out for drug interactions from older anticholinergics like diphenhydramine, amitriptyline, and hydroxyzine.

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