[Drug-induced Cognitive Impairment]

Brain Nerve. 2016 Apr;68(4):421-8. doi: 10.11477/mf.1416200415.
[Article in Japanese]


Elderly people are more likely than young people to develop cognitive impairments associated with medication use. One of the reasons for this is that renal and liver functions are often impaired in elderly people. Dementia and delirium (an acute confused state) are known to be associated with drug toxicity. Anticholinergic medications are common causes of both acute and chronic cognitive impairment. Psychoactive drugs, antidepressants and anticonvulsants can cause dementia and delirium. In addition, non-psychoactive drugs such as histamine H2 receptor antagonists, corticosteroids, NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agent), and cardiac medications, may cause acute or chronic cognitive impairment. Early diagnosis and withdrawal of the offending agent are essential for the prevention of drug-induced dementia and delirium.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antidepressive Agents / adverse effects*
  • Cholinergic Antagonists / adverse effects*
  • Cognition / drug effects*
  • Cognition Disorders / chemically induced*
  • Cognition Disorders / diagnosis
  • Delirium / chemically induced*
  • Dementia / drug therapy*
  • Humans


  • Antidepressive Agents
  • Cholinergic Antagonists