Aricept vs. Exelon

Are Aricept and Exelon the Same Thing?

Aricept (donepezil hydrochloride) and Exelon (rivastigmine tartrate) are cholinesterase inhibitors used to reduce symptoms of mild to moderate dementia like that found in patients with Alzheimer's disease or Parkinson's disease.

Side effects of Aricept and Exelon that are similar include appetite

What Are Possible Side Effects of Aricept?

Common side effects of Aricept include:

Tell your doctor if you experience serious side effects of Aricept including painful urination, seizures, chest pain, and GI symptoms of tarry or bloody stools and vomiting blood or material that resembles "coffee grounds."

What Are Possible Side Effects of Exelon?

Common side effects of Exelon include:

  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • upset stomach,
  • loss of appetite,
  • weight loss,
  • diarrhea,
  • weakness,
  • dizziness,
  • swelling in your hands or feet,
  • joint pain,
  • cough,
  • runny or stuffy nose,
  • increased sweating,
  • drowsiness,
  • sleep problems (insomnia),
  • headache, and
  • shakiness (tremors).

Tell your doctor if you have serious side effects of Exelon including:

  • slow or irregular heartbeat,
  • fainting,
  • black stools,
  • vomit that looks like coffee grounds,
  • severe stomach or abdominal pain,
  • seizures, or
  • trouble urinating.

What is Aricept?

Aricept (donepezil hydrochloride) is a cholinesterase inhibitor that reduces or prevents acetylcholine breakdown in brain tissue. Aricept is used to treat mild to moderate dementia like that found in patients with Alzheimer's disease. Aricept is not a cure; it reduces symptoms.

What is Exelon?

Exelon (rivastigmine tartrate) is a reversible cholinesterase inhibitor used to treat mild to moderate dementia caused by Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease.


Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, and Aging Brains See Slideshow

What Drugs Interact With Aricept?

Aricept may interact with many drugs; tell the physician if you have a history of breathing problems, heart disease, fainting, seizures, GI diseases or urinary problems because they may get worst with this drug. Aricept is not recommended for use in pregnant or breastfeeding women. Aricept safety and effectiveness has not been studied in the pediatric population.

What Drugs Interact With Exelon?

Exelon may interact with atropine, belladonna, clidinium, dicyclomine, glycopyrrolate, hyoscyamine, mepenzolate, methantheline, methscopolamine, propantheline, or scopolamine. Tell your doctor all medications you are taking.

How Should Aricept Be Taken?

Aricept (donepezil hydrochloride) is available for oral administration in film-coated tablets in doses of 5, 10, or 23 mg of donepezil hydrochloride.

How Should Exelon Be Taken?

The dosage of Exelon to treat Alzheimer's Disease is 6-12 mg/day, given twice-a-day. The dose to treat Parkinson's Disease is 3-12 mg/day, given twice-a-day.


One of the first symptoms of Alzheimer's disease is __________________. See Answer

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Eisai R&D Management Co., Ltd. Aricept Product Information.

Novartis. Exelon Product Information.

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