(RxWiki News) A treatment for Alzheimer’s disease psychosis may be on the horizon.
The University of Exeter Medical School is currently studying Nuplazid (pimavanserin) as a treatment option for psychosis associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Nuplazid is currently the first and only approved medication to treat Parkinson’s disease psychosis.
“Psychosis is a particularly terrifying symptom of Alzheimer’s disease,” said lead study author Dr. Clive Ballard, of the University of Exeter Medical School, in a press release. He said there is an unmet need for approved treatments for dementia-related psychosis.
Many people living with Alzheimer’s disease will experience some form of psychosis. Presently, no medications are approved for the treatment of psychosis associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
In addition, the use of antipsychotics to treat dementia-related psychosis is controversial. As with all medications, antipsychotics can lead to side effects and may be associated with serious risks. If approved, pimavanserin may be an important new treatment option.
These researchers assessed the safety and effectiveness of pimavanserin in more than 180 patients with Alzheimer’s disease. They found that pimavanserin reduced psychosis symptoms tied to Alzheimer’s.
Pimavanserin is now being studied in a phase 3 clinical trial to see if it can prevent relapse of psychosis symptoms.
These findings were published in the journal Lancet Neurology. The pharmaceutical company Acadia, which markets pimavanserin, funded this research.