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Review: rivastigmine may improve cognitive outcomes in Alzheimer's disease

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QUESTION: In patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD), how safe and effective is rivastigmine in improving cognitive outcomes?

Data sources

Studies were identified by searching the Cochrane Controlled Trials Register, the Cochrane Dementia Group register of clinical trials, Medline, EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, PsycLIT, CINAHL, and SIGLE; handsearching geriatric and dementia journals and conference abstracts; contacting pharmaceutical companies; and reviewing references of identified studies.

Study selection

Studies were selected if they were randomised, concealed, double blind, placebo controlled trials of patients with probable AD and treatment with rivastigmine was given for ≥2 weeks.

Data extraction

Data were extracted on methodological quality including concealment, blinding, intention to treat analysis, and patient follow up. Data on outcome measures were sought for individual patients. The outcomes presented here are improvement in cognitive function (≥4 points improvement …

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