In a double-blind clinical trial, vinpocetine, a synthetic ethyl ester of apovincamine, was shown to effect significant improvement in elderly patients with chronic cerebral dysfunction. Forty-two patients received 10 mg vinpocetine three times a day (tid) for 30 days, then 5 mg tid for 60 days. Matching placebo tablets were given to another 42 patients for the 90 day trial period. Patients on vinpocetine scored consistently better in all evaluations of the effectiveness of treatment including measurements on the Clinical Global Impression (CGI) scale, the Sandoz Clinical Assessment-Geriatric (SCAG) scale, and the Mini-Mental Status Questionnaire (MMSQ). There were no serious side effects related to the treatment drug.