2012 Volume 51 Issue 6 Pages 575-578
Objective Donepezil is a widely used cholinesterase inhibitor for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease (AD), however its cholinergic adverse side effects on the cardiovascular system are still unclear. In this study, we aimed to examine the adverse side effects caused by donepezil on cardiac rhythm and postural blood pressure changes in elderly patients with Alzheimer Disease.
Methods The ECG parameters including heart rate, PR, QT, QTc interval and QRS duration and postural blood pressure changes were recorded at the baseline and at each donepezil dose level (5 and 10 mg/d).
Patients Seventy-one consecutive patients who were referred by primary care centers to a Geriatric Clinic were enrolled and underwent comprehensive geriatric assessment.
Results Fifty-two subjects completed the study. There were no significant changes relative to the baseline in any of the ECG parameters or arterial blood pressure at any of the investigated dosages of donepezil.
Conclusion It was demonstrated that donepezil was not associated with increased negative chronotropic, arrhythmogenic or hypotensive effects for elderly patients with Alzheimer's disease.