Review: Cholinesterase inhibitors may be effective in Alzheimer disease: COMMENTARY

Luckmann, Roger
January 2006
ACP Journal Club;Jan/Feb2006, Vol. 144 Issue 1, p19
Academic Journal
The article presents information on a clinical study according to which cholinesterase inhibitors may be effective in treating Alzheimer disease (AD). The current consensus on cholinesterase inhibitors in the treatment of AD is that they probably have a small positive effect on cognitive function, and possibly behavior, in some patients, but the clinical significance of the effect may be marginal. They describe most flaws accurately but sometimes mischaracterize them or overstate their significance. The authors of the study, however, correctly highlight the potentially serious bias that could result from the absence of final outcome measures on most patients who are withdrawn. Clinicians still must struggle with how to identify responders to cholinesterase inhibitors, how long to treat, and whether a trial of medication is cost-effective.


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