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Olanzapine Treats Symptoms of Psychosis in Alzheimer’s Disease

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By Alzheimer Support staff • • May 16, 2000

Researchers released new information regarding the drug Olanzapine (Lilly) at the annual gathering of the American Psychiatric Association. The treatment is said to combat the behavioral and symptoms of psychosis in patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

In an 18-week long study, researchers examined 137 participants from nursing homes who met the diagnostic criteria for Alzheimer’s. The subjects were administered daily doses of 5, 10 or 15 mg. Olanzapine.

Researchers found that patients on Olanzapine scored higher on the NPI/NH Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale, which is designed to gauge occurrences such as agitation, delusion and hallucination.

The individuals who took Olanzapine showed improvement in symptoms of psychosis, behavior, anxiety and depression. The drug was especially effective in treating hallucinations and aggression.

The drug was not found to cause any mental deterioration. However, some side effects included drowsiness, dizziness, weight gain, constipation and restlessness.

Six to eight percent of people over 65 develop Alzheimer’s disease. Experts hypothesize that more than half show psychotic symptoms, and that between one half to three-fourths exhibit agitation, hostility or disorientation.

In the United States, Olanzapine is used to treat other psychotic such as Bipolar Personality Disorder. Since its introduction in 1996, Olanzapine has been prescribed to four million people worldwide.

Source: The Doctor’s Guide

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