Cleveland—Agitation was reduced in patients with probable Alzheimer’s disease who received a combination medication, dextromethorphan-quinidine, compared to placebo. The preliminary 10-week randomized trial was published recently in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The combination of the drugs dextromethorphan hydrobromide and quinidine sulfate is approved for the treatment of pseudobulbar affect, and the study team, led by Cleveland Clinic researchers, sought to determine if the drugs could have a potential benefit for agitation. The industry-funded study, which was completed by 194 patients at 42 sites, was conducted in two stages. Results indicate that participants treated with only dextromethorphan-quinidine had an average 51% reduction in the measure of agitation from baseline to Week 10, compared with 26% for those treated with only placebo.

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