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Tacrine in Alzheimer's disease. Time course of changes in cognitive function and practice effects.

Author(s): Eagger S, Morant N, Levy R, Sahakian B

Affiliation(s): Institute of Psychiatry, Denmark Hill, London.

Publication date & source: 1992-01, Br J Psychiatry., 160:36-40.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

This paper concerns certain questions which arose during the analysis of a trial showing positive effects of tacrine in Alzheimer's disease. Cognitive improvement occurred during the first two weeks, reached a maximum at one month and was maintained during the rest of the three-month treatment period. Rebound effects were not detected in any of the key outcome variables, but were suggested by one of the supporting cognitive tests and other measures. Practice effects occurred on tests which were repeated at short intervals or too frequently. The paper discusses the significance of these findings for the interpretation of other trials and for practical management.

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