Introduction: There is little data on stopping cholinesterase inhibitors in Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). Equally, it is not known if increasing the dose of cholinesterase inhibitors may help neuropsychiatric symptoms in advanced DLB.
Method: We conducted an open label trial with donepezil involving 16 patients with LBD when the dose was reduced and treatment stopped over 4 weeks. Another 7 patients were given a trial of an increased dose of donepezil (15 mg) to resolve rehyphen;emergent neuropsychiatric symptoms.
Results: The slow discontinuation protocol was well tolerated in advanced DLB. Five of the seven patients given a trial of a higher dose of donepezil were rated as clinically improved after 12 weeks treatment.
Conclusion: Cholinesterase inhibitors can be discontinued slowly in advanced DLB. Increasing the dose of donepezil may be of benefit to some patients with DLB who experience a recurrence in their neuropsychiatric symptoms.