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Memantine was approved for sale in Canada in 2004 for use in moderate to severe dementia, it is an uncompetitive N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist that blocks the effects of excessive glutamate while still preserving physiologic activation of NMDA receptors required for learning and memory [5]

  • by blocking the effects of abnormal glutamate activity, memantine prevents neuronal cell death and cognitive dysfunction [5]

  • in a 1999 randomized, placebo controlled trial of 150 patients with AD or VaD, the treatment group showed better functional outcomes and reduced care dependence as compared to placebo group [6]

  • memantine is well tolerated and safe in reported trials and can be co-administered with ChEIs safely

  • the most common reported side effect is dizziness [6]


5. Reisberg B, Doody R, Stoffler A. Memantine in moderate-to-severe Alzheimer´s disease. N Engl J Med 2003;348(14):1333-41.

6. Winblad B, Poritis N. Memantine in severe dementia: Results of the 9M-Best Study. Int J Geriatr Psychiatry 1999; 14:135-46.

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