Effects of Yokukansan on behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia in regular treatment for Alzheimer's disease.Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 2010 Apr 16; 34(3):532-6.PN
Yokukansan (YKS) is used frequently against behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD) together with donepezil in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here, we investigated the efficacy and safety of YKS in patients with AD in a non-blinded, randomized, parallel-group comparison study. Patients who had at least one symptom score of four or more on the Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI) subscales were enrolled in the study. The subjects were randomly assigned to the YKS-treated group (YKS/donepezil combination therapy group) and the non-YKS-treated group (donepezil monotherapy group). TSUMURA Yokukansan (TJ-54, 7.5g, t.i.d.) was administered in a four-week study treatment period. The subjects were evaluated twice at the start (Week 0) and completion (Week 4) of the study treatment in terms of NPI, Mini-Mental Status Examination (MMSE), Disability Assessment for Dementia (DAD), Zarit Burden Interview, and Self-rating Depression Scale (SDS). The efficacy analysis was performed in 29 patients (YKS-treated group) and 32 patients (non-YKS-treated group). The NPI total score improved significantly more in the YKS-treated group than in the non-YKS-treated group. In the NPI subscales of agitation/aggression and irritability/lability, the YKS-treated group showed significantly greater improvement than the non-YKS-treated group, but no statistically significant improvement was seen with YKS in the other subscales. There were no significant differences between the YKS-treated group and the non-YKS-treated group in MMSE, DAD, Zarit Burden Interview and SDS. No adverse reactions were noted in either group. The results of this study showed that YKS is safe and effective in the treatment of BPSD in AD patients.