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Alzheimer's Disease and Glutamate Blockers

Read more about Glutamate Blockers.


Memantine is the first drug approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treatment of moderate to severe Alzheimer’s disease. (Cholinesterase inhibitors are approved for mild to moderate disease). Improvements in daily functioning and cognition (thinking) have been observed in Alzheimer’s patients.

Effect of Glutamate Blockers on Alzheimer's Disease

Memantine (Namenda) is a newer type of medicine that acts by blocking the effects of the chemical glutamate at a specific receptor in the brain (the NMDA receptor). It is thought to decrease neurotoxicity. Memantine should not be used if you have severe kidney impairment.

Side Effects and Warnings

Possible side effects of memantine include:

  • Headache
  • Confusion
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Drowsiness
  • Hallucinations
  • Cough
  • Diarrhea