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Pirker-Kees, A; Dal-Bianco, P; Schmidt, R.
Effects of Psychotropic Medication on Cognition, Caregiver Burden, and Neuropsychiatric Symptoms in Alzheimer's Disease over 12 Months: Results from a Prospective Registry of Dementia in Austria (PRODEM).
J Alzheimers Dis. 2019; 71(2): 623-630.
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Autor/innen der Med Uni Graz:
Schmidt Reinhold
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Abstract:
Behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia are common in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and associated with a more rapid decline in cognitive function. Psychotropic substances are frequently used in AD, but we lack conclusive evidence of their efficacy in this setting. SSRI and trazodone were reported to have positive effects on cognition. Based on the prospective registry of dementia in Austria (PRODEM), we investigated the effects of psychotropic substances on cognition, behavioral symptoms, and caregiver burden (CB) in patients with AD, followed up prospectively over a 12-month period. We used the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), the Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI), and the Zarit caregiver burden interview. The study cohort consisted of 309 patients. Patients taking no psychotropic drugs (NO) or those undergoing consistent monotherapy with a psychotropic drug for 12 months were analyzed further (NO 101 patients, SSRI 22, trazodone 8, atypical neuroleptics or benzodiazepines (ANL/BZD) 18). Additionally, the subgroup of patients who started taking any of the substances during the study period were analyzed further to determine the effects before versus six months after the start of medication. MMSE, NPI, and CB at baseline and during follow-up did not differ between the groups. MMSE and CB declined over 12 months in the overall group (MMSE: 21.2±4 versus 19.7±5, p = 0.001 and CB 20.3±12 versus 24.7±14.2, p = 0.007), but no statistically significant changes were registered within groups over 12 months. When trazodone was started, only NPI improved significantly after 6 months (33.4±18 versus 18.9±22.7, p < 0.01). ANL/BZD or SSRI, when started, did not alter MMSE, NPI, or CB. SSRI had no beneficial effect on cognition. We conclude that trazodone might be helpful in the treatment of behavioral symptoms.

Find related publications in this database (Keywords)
Alzheimer's disease
behavioral
caregiver
psychotropic drugs
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