Memantine may improve the ability to think and remember or may slow the loss of these abilities in people who have AD. Aricept (donepezil hydrochloride) and Namenda (memantine hydrochloride) are used to reduce symptoms of mild to moderate dementia like that found in patients with Alzheimer's disease. Namenda was approved by the FDA in 2003 and is available as a tablet, a solution, and an extended-release capsule. RESULTS: Pretreatment with memantine attenuated the craving for alcohol before alcohol administration, but not after alcohol was given. Aricept, Razadyne, and Exelon work in the same way in the brain, while Namenda works through a different system. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Although the drug does improve cognitive abilities as it’s mechanism of action, it is most likely to occur only in the use of individuals suffering from dementia or other brain injuries. Taking care of a loved one with Alzheimer’s is difficult and extremely stressful. Disclaimer: Please note that only your own physician can determine your precise needs, but in order to give you some information these answers are based upon the ‘average person’ and clinical / published results. Namenda may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide. The world’s most comprehensive antiaging resource. Namenda (memantine) is approved by the fda for the treatment of moderate to severe alzheimer's dementia. Take 20mg per day. Studies have shown that most people taking Namenda will start to see symptoms improve within a few months of taking Namenda. Cholinesterase inhibitors also work to increase communication between cells but target a different neurotransmitter. METHODS: Eighteen volunteers without alcohol dependence were tested using a double-blind design with three 3-day long inpatient phases separated by at least a 2-week wash-out period. That is why doctors sometimes hope that adding Namenda to Aricept or the other drugs might have an added benefit for patients with moderate or severe dementia. Read on to learn more about this drug, its mechanisms, side-effects, and more! What does the science have to say about how it works and what it does? Memantine also did not affect alcohol-induced impairment in performance, physiological changes, or pharmacokinetics. Rats consuming alcohol voluntarily for a long time show increased alcohol consumption after a phase of alcohol deprivation and this might reflect increased craving for alcohol. Other medications used for Alzheimer's disease affect acetylcholine, one of the neurotransmitter chemicals that nerve cells in the brain use to communicate with one another. I have read that people have used Memantine for alcoholism but I am unable to find any additional information, do you have any knowledge of this use and any further information? Accumulating evidence suggests that the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) type of ionotropic glutamate receptor is a particularly important site of action for ethanol. There are daily factors in our lives that cause over stimulation of NMDA receptors. This product is not available at the movement. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. The site is for educational purposes, medical decisions should not be based on its content and its authors assume no liability for errors or omissions. (It did not work for someone in the early stages of dementia.) Dad has been on first 5 mg of Donezepril since summer 2014 and then to 10 mg about 1.5 years later in 2nd attempt to increase the dose. There is no cure for Alzheimer’s. Encouraging experimental results have been obtained with novel uncompetitive (memantine and neramexane (Merz & Co GmbH/Forest Laboratories Inc)), glycine site and NR2B subunit-selective NMDA antagonists (SSNAs). It’s part of a class of drugs known as cholinesterase inhibitors. memory. Memantine is the first Alzheimer's drug that shows promise in the late stages of the disease. A deficiency of 5-HT nerve action has been shown to manifest as a broad array of emotional and behavioral problems, ranging from depression, premenstrual syndrome, anxiety, alcoholism and overeating to compulsive gambling, fire-starting, thrill-seeking through violence and suicide. Many of them are believed to be down to diet – food stuffs such as some artificial sweeteners, flavour enhancers (especially MSG) and even hydrolyzed vegetable proteins. Epub 2003 Oct 3. Memantine (Namenda) for Lewy Body Dementia Thing you should know #1: Memantine, also known by its trade name Namenda, works by blocking a … It works by decreasing abnormal activity in the brain. Memantine has been reported in studies as being well-tolerated, with few side effects. In people with moderate to severe Alzheimer’s, memantine seems to provide some benefits, in terms of slowing the deterioration of Alzheimer’s. Memantine increased subjective reports of dissociation, confusion, and stimulation, and impaired motor coordination on the balance task. Doctors prescribe Namenda in order to improve the cognitive and memory function of a patient or slow down the progression of the disease. was developed with funding from the National Institute on Aging (Grant #R43AG026227). In patients with mild to moderate dementia, onset of improvement can start in as early as 14 days. Studies with humans and animals over the past 35 years have shown that 5-HT (serotonin) nerve circuits promote feelings of well-being, calm, personal security, relaxation, confidence and concentration. The important (much rarer) side effects, which caregivers should watch for because of how memantine impacts signals in the brain, are shortness of breath and hallucinations. Memantine may interact with some other drugs such as Dextromethorphane, Cimetidine, procainamide, hydrochlorothiazide, anticholinergics, anticonvulsives, barbituates or dopaminergic antagonists like L-dopa or Parlodel (bromocriptine). 2004 Feb;172(1):16-24. Medications containing the drug memantine are supposed to help people who have Alzheimer’s disease remember things and better manage their daily tasks. Glutamate plays an essential role in learning and memory by triggering NMDA receptors to allow a controlled amount of calcium to flow into the nerve cells. It is known to improve memory concentration, enhance vigilance, boost concentration and improve short term memory. However, Namenda does not cure Alzheimer’s disease or halt the deterioration of the brain. Renaissance of NMDA receptor antagonists: do they have a role in the pharmacotherapy for alcoholism? It is an extremely useful preventative medicine in the war against aging, improving memory, learning and general mental functioning. Common side effects include dizziness, headache, confusion and agitation. The dose of memantine used (4.8 mg/day) resulted in serum levels close to the therapeutic range in humans. Memantine helps avoid the aging effects of overexciting our brain receptors by regulating the activity of glutamate. There is high-certainty evidence showing no difference between memantine and placebo in the proportion experiencing at least one adverse event: RR 1.03 (95% CI 1.00 to 1.06); the RR does not differ between aetiologies or severities of dementia. Medicare Part D, which covers prescription drugs, and Medicare Advantage, which is tailored through a private insurer to fit the specific patient, should both cover the cost of Namenda (or generic equivalent) if it is prescribed by a doctor. It isn’t a cure (there is no cure for Alzheimer’s or related dementias) but studies have shown memantine treats symptoms by improving memory, awareness, and concentration. The findings suggest that NMDA receptor neurotransmission may be involved in alcohol craving and alcohol-induced subjective dissociative effects. For mental performance, things like learning and remembering, it was the same: Subjects still got worse but at a slower rate. A neurotransmitter called glutamate helps this process by carrying the signals across cells, but patients with Alzheimer’s have too much glutamate, and the excess throws the process awry, damaging the cells, even killing them, and muddling the message. These results indicate that memantine may have therapeutical potential as an anti-craving drug for alcohol. Aricept is an oral medication taken once daily that stops the breakdown of acetylcholine, a brain chemical that helps nerve cells communicate with one another. Aricept, Razadyne, and Exelon work in the same way in the brain, while Namenda works through a different system. Memantine is derived from a naturally occurring compound called adamantine, which is found in teeth and other bony parts of the body.Memantine works in a very different way to most existing drugs used to treat Alzheimer’s. Namenda (memantine) is postulated to exert its therapeutic effect through its action by blocking nmda receptors. Long-term alcohol exposure leads to the development of alcohol dependence, which is possibly induced by changes in specific neurotransmitter functions. Holter SM, Danysz W, Spanagel R. Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry, Drug Abuse Group, Munich, Germany. Namenda (memantine) reduces the actions of chemicals in the brain that may contribute to the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. 1996 Oct 31;314(3). Memantine could help improve memory, attention, reasoning, and language. What Is Memantine and How Does It Work? Memantine is not a cure, but it can slow down the progression of the symptoms in some people. Memantine can be taken with other Alzheimer’s drugs such as Aricept, Exelon, and Reminyl (galantamine), as it works in a different manner. Nighttime can be especially difficult for someone with dementia (and for caregivers trying to keep that someone safe) and memantine’s effect on the brain is demonstrated to make nights more calm. Memantine offers benefits to non Alzheimer’s sufferers too. That said I thought I’d list the abstracts from three published articles below, all of which involve memantine and alcohol as they may give you more information to go on: In addition, there are (as you probably know) also links between serotonin and alcoholism. due to genetics, stress or drugs) DA and NA circuits to encourage over arousal, fear, anger, tension, aggression and violence, obsessive compulsive actions, anxiety and sleep disturbance. Memantine is in a class of medications called NMDA receptor antagonists. Memantine blocks NMDA receptors, and that’s why it … Aricept and Namenda belong to different drug classes. Memantine reduces the actions of chemicals in the brain that may contribute to the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. Alzheimer’s glutamate binds to receptors in the brain, allowing calcium to flow freely into the cell, a process known as ‘overexcitation.’ Chronic overexposure to calcium in turn leads to cell degeneration. It works by regulating the activity of glutamate, a messenger chemical widely involved in brain functions — including learning and memory. This causes more damage to the nerve cells. Thank you for your interesting questions regarding alcoholism and memantine. Studies show that memantine … Other treatments involve inhibiting an enzyme called acetylcholinesterase, which breaks down the brain neurotransmitter – acetylcholine. If either of these are observed, contact a doctor immediately or seek emergency services. Geriatrician added Memantine late July and he was on a 4 week step up and he had a stroke on Day 23 or 2nd day of 4th week. You may find there differing methods of action interesting, although I do suspect that the improvement is more along the lines of improved memory/ concentration, perhaps as a result of the alcoholism rather than as a preventative to alcohol itself. The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Recent clinical trials have revealed its benefits as a Parkinsons disease treatment, and it is also believed to protect brain and nerve cells in people with alcohol dependence. The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. As Memantine is known to improve short term memory and concentration in Alzheimer’s sufferers, it follows there are potential uses for other diseases involving cognitive decline. Memantine will be prescribed by a specialist doctor. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. Signals communicated across brain cells essentially enable us to think, learn, and remember. Although in vivo data are few, according to their in vitro efficacy and good tolerability, novel NMDA antagonists, especially the NR2B-selective antagonists, may offer a preferable alternative to the presently available pharmacotherapies for treating alcoholism. But again, the benefit overall seems to be fairly modest. Memantine and cholinesterase inhibitors, in fact, can be prescribed together, and studies have shown they may work in tandem to ease symptoms. It is no coincidence that the most popular psychiatric drugs in history are the SSRIs, and the common thread connecting MAOIs, TCAs, and SSRIs is their 5-HT neural effects. Copyright 2017 © International AntiAging Systems - Any person who wishes to copy and paste information from the website for publishing on the internet unchanged must do so only with the express written permission of IAS. The other drugs work by combating the breakdown of a neurotransmitter known as acetylcholine. Memantine is believed to work by preventing this destructive process by blocking the action of  Alzheimer’s glutamate at NMDA receptor sites. Please note that S&H costs are per order, not per product. There is rarely a problem with the structure or ‘wiring’ of the brain's 5-HT circuits. Content cannot be reproduced without permission.©1995-2021. Glutamate has been shown to cause deterioration of neurons (brain cells) through a chemical process called neuroexcitatory damage. A Swedish study in 1999 reported that, ‘The results of the trial support that Memantine treatment leads to functional improvement and reduces care dependence in severely demented patients.”. Memantine HCL is not known to cause addiction but, used in high dosages and in conjunction with other substances, can lead to dangerous side effects. Memantine works by blocking the receptors in the brain that glutamate would normally bind to. Memantine is a drug approved for the treatment of moderate-to-severe Alzheimer’s disease. Forest Laboratories markets Memantine across the United States under the brand Namenda. Memantine works in a very different way to most existing drugs used to treat Alzheimer’s. Memantine use should be carefully monitored by your doctor if you have a history of seizures or have recently had a heart attack, kidney disease or untreated hypertension. 2004 Apr;7(4):339-50. The following was published in IDrugs. That said, watch for fatigue, aches, dizziness, nausea, and constipation. We also provide information on where to safely purchase hard to obtain medicines, nutritional supplements and bio identical hormones to make these theories and methods a reality.. Both types of drugs help manage symptoms but work in different ways. What is memantine? Memantine is used to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease (AD; a brain disease that slowly destroys the memory and the ability to think, learn, communicate and handle daily activities). Memantine and cholinesterase inhibitors, in fact, can be prescribed together, and studies have shown they may work in tandem to ease symptoms. Different neurotransmitters have different roles; for example, glutamate is involved in learning and memory. How well does memantine work? Memantine works by blocking the NMDA receptors in the brain. Memantine protects nerve … Still, the main goal of this research was to focus more on Aricept’s effectiveness than Namenda’s. Memantine is a prescription drug used to treat moderate to severe confusion (dementia) related to Alzheimer's disease. The fifth medication is a combination of one of the cholinesterase inhibitors (donepezil) with memantine. Cholinesterase inhibitors also work to increase communication between cells but target a different neurotransmitter. Memantine (Namenda) is approved by the FDA for treatment of moderate to severe Alzheimer's disease. What is memantine, and how does it work (mechanism of action)? By 42 days, the study reported that, “It was particularly striking in the daily-living tests, of the patients considerable improvement achieved in the quality of performing tasks under Memantine treatment.”, Perhaps most significant of all is Memantine’s performance in late-stage Alzheimer’s disease, where other treatments are currently unavailable. Memantine is different from a cholinesterase inhibitor, which is another kind of medicine prescribed for persons with Alzheimer’s or other dementia (typically in earlier stages). Ethanol potently and selectively inhibits NMDA receptors (NMDARs) and prolonged ethanol exposure produces a compensatory 'upregulation' of NMDAR functions. Namenda works on the brain differently than Aricept does. 9,12 This inhibition blocks neuronal excitation or CSD and therefore is thought to inhibit migraine pain. Memantine, however, appears to work by protecting the brain’s nerve cells against glutamate, which is a chemical released in excess by cells damaged by Alzheimer’s or other neurological disorders. In addition to being a proven Alzheimer’s Disease treatment, Memantine is useful for treating people who have not been diagnosed with a specific senile dementia, but who have general mental decline. 5-HT is the "Achilles heel" of the human brain. Other treatments involve inhibiting an enzyme called acetylcholinesterase, which breaks down the brain neurotransmitter – acetylcholine. Memantine is also different from other prescription drugs used for the treatment of Alzheimer’s. The drug memantine is a safe and effective therapy that helps patients suffering from moderate to severe Alzheimer disease for up to a year. See our terms and conditions for more information., It is also used “off-label” to treat dementia, ADHD, PTSD, and other psychiatric conditions. Memantine prevents excess glutamate from killing cells, without damaging the signal. Memantine is an oral medication for treating patients with Alzheimer's disease. memantine for people with severe Alzheimer’s Disease, and if the person is already taking acetylcholinesterase inhibitors primary care prescribers may start treatment with memantine without taking advice from a specialist. Unfortunately, this burden was not relieved despite moderate improvement in the sick individuals being cared for. Yet no neuron suffered a literal deficiency of these xenobiotic drug molecules. Namenda is used to treat moderate to severe dementia of the Alzheimer's type.