Donepezil helps to improve symptoms of dementia (group of symptoms affecting thinking and social abilities) in Alzheimer's disease (a progressive disease which destroys memory and other important mental functions) such as memory loss, confusion, and problems with thinking and reasoning.
Donepezil cannot cure Alzheimer's disease, but it can improve the quality of life for people who have Alzheimer's disease.
Take Donepezil exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label . Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.
Donepezil can be taken with or without food. Take Donepezil every night just before you go to bed.
If you are taking the normal tablet, swallow it with a glass of water or other liquid.
If you are taking the orally disintegrating tablet (labelled as "ODT"), place the tablet on your tongue and allow it to dissolve with or without a glass of water.
Donepezil must be taken regularly for it to be effective. It may take several weeks before you notice any improvement in your condition. Continue taking Donepezil even when there are signs of improvement. Do not stop taking Donepezil unless instructed by the doctor.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and return to the normal dosing schedule.
DO NOT double a dose to make up for a missed dose.
If you have missed your dose of Donepezil for more than one week, check with your doctor before restarting it.
If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know. They can give you some advice to help you remember your dosing schedule.
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- stomach ulcers
- asthma or other lung problems
- abnormal heart rhythms
- Parkinson's disease (brain disease that affects movement)
- fits or seizures
- prostate or bladder problems
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
If you are going for an operation, including minor surgery and dental work, inform your doctor or dentist that you are taking Donepezil.
Donepezil may cause dizziness. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert.
Other common side effects of Donepezil include any of the following: nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, headache, muscle cramps, loss of appetite and difficulty in sleeping.
Let your doctor know if you experience:
- irregular heart beat
- muscle rigidity, fever, and blood pressure changes
- unusual changes in mood and behaviour (being depressed, agitated, aggressive)
- confusion and hallucinations (seeing, hearing or feeling things that are not existent)
Inform your doctor if any of these side do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
- certain antibiotic e.g. erythromycin
- medicines to treat fungal infection e.g. ketoconazole, itraconazole
- medicines to treat TB (lung infection known as tuberculosis) e.g.rifampicin
- medicines for epilepsy (seizures or fits) e.g. phenytoin ,carbamazepine, phenobarbital
- bethanecol (medicine for urinary retention)
- quinidine (heart medicine)
- fluoxetine (medicine to treat depression)
- succinylcholine ( muscle relaxant)
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Donepezil.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicine, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.