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Acetylcholinesterase Inhibitors to Improve Cognitive Function and Overall Rehabilitation After a Stroke

This study has been completed.
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
University of Pittsburgh Identifier:
First received: September 26, 2005
Last updated: March 7, 2014
Last verified: March 2014

September 26, 2005
March 7, 2014
April 2003
Not Provided
Cognitive and physical function (measured by the Functional Independence Measure and the Apathy Evaluation Scale at Week 12)
Cognitive function
Complete list of historical versions of study NCT00227994 on Archive Site
Medication tolerability (measured throughout the study)
Functional recovery
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Acetylcholinesterase Inhibitors to Improve Cognitive Function and Overall Rehabilitation After a Stroke
Donepezil/ Galantamine in the Treatment of Post-stroke Cognitively Impaired Rehabilitating Elderly
This study will evaluate the effectiveness of treatment with acetylcholinesterase inhibitors in improving cognitive function and overall rehabilitation in elderly stroke survivors.

Cognitive impairment is a common result of a stroke and can be detrimental to recovery. It can negatively affect both mental and physical functioning, thereby complicating the rehabilitation process. Although much research has targeted the effects of long-term cognitive impairment after a stroke, very little research has been done to examine the incidence and course of cognitive impairment during the first three months following a stroke. These first three months are the most important in terms of regaining function. Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors have been beneficial to both sufferers of vascular dementia and Alzheimer's disease. They may also be a useful pharmacologic intervention to enhance post-stroke rehabilitation. This study will compare the effectiveness of two acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, galantamine and donepezil, in improving cognitive function and overall rehabilitation in elderly stroke survivors.

Participants in this open label study will be randomly assigned to receive either galantamine or donepezil for 12 weeks. Participants assigned to receive galantamine will receive 4 mg twice a day for 4 weeks, 8 mg twice a day for the next 4 weeks, and 12 mg twice a day for the remainder of the study. Participants assigned to receive donepezil will receive 5 mg twice a day for 6 weeks, and then 10 mg twice a day for the next 6 weeks. Functional independence will be measured at baseline and Weeks 2 and 12. In addition, a pre-stroke level of functional independence will be obtained through a structured interview with participants and their families. Participants will also be monitored for signs of depression and medication side effects throughout the study.

Phase 4
Allocation: Non-Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Cerebrovascular Accident
  • Drug: Galantamine
  • Drug: Donepezil
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*   Includes publications given by the data provider as well as publications identified by Identifier (NCT Number) in Medline.
March 2005
Not Provided

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Admitted to a rehabilitation hospital with primary diagnosis of ischemic stroke (cardiovascular accident)
  • Stroke was within 30 days of being admitted
  • Medically stable
  • Presence of memory and/or attentional impairments and evidence that these impairments were not present or were less severe prior to the stroke (assessed via interview with family)
  • Approval by individual's attending physician at the rehabilitation hospital

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Aphasia or cognitive (or behavioral) impairments severe enough to prevent valid neuropsychiatric assessment
  • Currently experiencing a major depressive episode (unless treated and in partial remission, assessed using the Primary Care Evaluation of Mental Disorders)
  • Current psychosis or mania
  • History of substance or alcohol abuse or dependence within three months of study entry
  • Currently taking a cholinomimetic drug
  • Medical condition with known sensitivity to donepezil (e.g., slower than normal heart rate, supraventricular cardiac conduction defects, severe asthma or obstructive pulmonary disease, active upper gastrointestinal bleed, or gastric/duodenal ulcer if not on acid-blocking agent)
  • Informed that taking donepezil is medically inadvisable
  • Current use of any anticholinergic medication (e.g., for bladder spasm)
60 Years and older   (Adult, Senior)
Contact information is only displayed when the study is recruiting subjects
United States
K23MH064196-01, K23MH064196-01, DATR AK-TNGP2
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University of Pittsburgh
University of Pittsburgh
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Principal Investigator: Eric J. Lenze, MD University of Pittsburgh
University of Pittsburgh
March 2014

ICMJE     Data element required by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors and the World Health Organization ICTRP