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Thursday, July 09, 2009

Paxil can lead to cognitive impairment in older people

By Darla Carter
dcarter@courier-journal.com

They're used for some of the most common ailments around — allergies, nausea, depression, itching, urinary incontinence and lack of sleep, just to name a few.

But they also could affect your mental sharpness, especially if you're over the age of 65.

The culprit: drugs, such as Benadryl, Detrol and Paxil, that have so-called "anticholinergic effects," or put another way, can affect cognitive performance.

Dr. Malaz Boustani of Indiana University co-authored a paper about the drugs recently. He thinks more people need to be aware that medications with anticholinergic effects can lead to cognitive impairment in older people, though it's unclear whether there's a long-term impact on the brain.

FULL STORY - Courier Journal

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