BACKGROUND: As of 2010, the rivastigmine patch was licensed for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease (AD) in 64 countries. METHODS: This 24-week, multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study evaluated the efficacy, safety and tolerability of the 5-cm(2) (9-mg loading dose; 4.6 mg/24 h delivery rate) and 10-cm(2) (18-mg loading dose; 9.5 mg/24 h delivery rate) rivastigmine patch in Japanese patients with AD. RESULTS: In the primary analysis population (intent-to-treat last observation carried forward) at week 24, delayed deterioration was seen with the 10-cm(2) patch versus placebo on the Japanese version of the Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale (ADAS-J cog; p = 0.005) and the Japanese version of the Clinician's Interview-Based Impression of Change plus Caregiver Input (CIBIC plus-J; p = 0.067). Participants receiving the rivastigmine patch showed numerically less decline versus placebo at week 24 on the CIBIC plus-J, although this did not reach statistical significance. Statistical significance for the CIBIC plus-J was met following adjustment for body weight and baseline Mini-Mental State Examination score as dynamic allocation factors (p = 0.042) and on the Disability Assessment for Dementia (DAD; p = 0.024) and Mental Function Impairment (MENFIS; p = 0.016) subscales. Serious adverse events were rare and were consistent with the known safety profile of the rivastigmine patch. Conclusion: The rivastigmine patch has a favorable efficacy and tolerability profile in Japanese patients with AD.
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