Commonly Used Brand Name(s): Namenda, Namenda XR, Namenda XR Titration Pack

Therapeutic Classification: Central Nervous System Agent

Pharmacologic Classification: N-Methyl-D-Aspartate Receptor Antagonist

Memantine is used to treat moderate to severe Alzheimer's disease. Memantine is not a cure for Alzheimer's disease but it can help people with the disease. Memantine will not cure Alzheimer's disease, and it will not stop the disease from getting worse.

This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription.

Take this medicine exactly as directed by your doctor. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered.

This medicine comes with a patient information insert. Read and follow the instructions in the insert carefully. Ask your doctor if you have any questions.

You may take this medicine with or without food.

Swallow the extended-release capsules whole. Do not break, crush, or chew them.

If you cannot swallow the extended-release capsule, you may open it and pour the medicine into a small amount of soft food such as applesauce. Stir this mixture well and swallow it without chewing.

For patients taking the oral liquid:

  • Remove the oral dosing syringe along with the cap and plastic tube from the bag and attach to tube to the cap.
  • Open the child-resistant cap on the bottle by pushing down on the cap while turning the cap counter-clockwise (to the left) and remove the cap and seal from the bottle.
  • Insert the plastic tube fully into the bottle and screw the cap tightly onto the bottle by turning the cap clockwise (to the right).
  • Keeping the bottle upright on the table, remove the lid to uncover the opening on the top of the cap. With the plunger fully depressed, insert the tip of the syringe firmly into the opening of the cap.
  • While holding the syringe, gently pull the plunger of the syringe up to draw medicine into the syringe.
  • Remove the syringe from the cap opening. Invert the syringe (point tip upwards) and slowly press the plunger to a level that pushed out any large air bubbles that may be present. Keep the plunger in this position.
  • Re-insert the tip of the syringe into the cap opening. While holding the syringe, continue to gently pull out the plunger until the bottom of the black ring of the plunger reaches the appropriate mark on the syringe that corresponds to the dose prescribed.
  • Remove the syringe from the bottle and swallow the oral solution directly from the syringe. Do not mix with any other liquid.
  • After use, reseal the bottle by snapping the attached lid closed.
  • Rinse the empty syringe by inserting the open end of the syringe into a glass of water, pulling the plunger out to draw in water, and pushing the plunger in to remove the water. Repeat several times. Allow the syringe to air dry.

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For treatment of Alzheimer's disease:
    • For oral dosage form (extended-release capsules):
      • Adults—At first, 7 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may gradually increase your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 28 mg per day.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For oral dosage form (solution and tablets):
      • Adults—At first, 5 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may gradually increase your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 10 mg two times a day.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Appropriate studies on the relationship of age to the effects of memantine have not been performed in the pediatric population.

Geriatric

No information is available on the relationship of age to the effects of memantine in geriatric patients.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy CategoryExplanation
All TrimestersBAnimal studies have revealed no evidence of harm to the fetus, however, there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR animal studies have shown an adverse effect, but adequate studies in pregnant women have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus.

Breast Feeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Drug Interactions

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.

Other Interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Epilepsy or seizures or
  • Urinary tract problems (e.g., bladder problems, difficulty with urination)—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
  • Kidney disease or
  • Liver disease—Use with caution. The effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body.

It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure that this medicine is working properly and to check for unwanted effects.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • difficulty passing urine
  • kidney disease
  • liver disease
  • seizures
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to memantine, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

Take this medicine by mouth with a glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. You may take this medicine with or without food. You may swallow the capsules whole or open them and sprinkle the entire contents on applesauce before swallowing. Other than sprinkling the medicine on applesauce, the capsules should be swallowed whole and not divided, chewed, or crushed. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed. Continue to take your medicine even if you feel better. Do not stop taking except on the advice of your doctor or health care professional.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

Overdosage: If you think you've taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature between 15 degrees and 30 degrees C (59 degrees and 86 degrees F). Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.

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