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Curr Med Res Opin. 2008 Sep;24(9):2561-74. doi: 10.1185/03007990802328142 . Epub 2008 Jul 31.

Efficacy, safety and tolerability of rivastigmine capsules in patients with probable vascular dementia: the VantagE study.

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  • 1Wolfson Centre for Age-Related Diseases, King's College, London, UK.



The aim was to evaluate the efficacy, safety and tolerability of rivastigmine capsules in patients diagnosed with probable vascular dementia (VaD).


VantagE (Vascular Dementia trial studying Exelon) was a 24-week, multicentre, double-blind study. VaD patients aged 50-85 years were randomized to rivastigmine capsules (3-12 mg/day) or placebo. Efficacy assessments included global and cognitive performances, activities of daily living and neuropsychiatric symptoms. Adverse events were recorded. Additional exploratory analyses determined whether heterogeneity in pathologies and symptoms extended to differential treatment effects.




710 patients were randomized. Rivastigmine demonstrated superiority over placebo on three measures of cognitive performance (Vascular Dementia Assessment Scale, Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale cognitive subscale, Mini-Mental State Examination; all p< or = 0.05, intent-to-treat population [ITT]), but not other outcomes. Predominant adverse events were nausea and vomiting. Exploratory analyses indicated that older patients (> or =75 years old), assumed more likely to also have Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathology, demonstrated significant cognitive responses to rivastigmine and a safety profile similar to that seen in AD patients. Younger patients, assumed less likely to have concomitant AD pathology, showed no efficacy response and were associated with slight elevations of blood pressure, cerebrovascular accidents and mortality. Rivastigmine-placebo differences in patients with, versus those without, medial temporal atrophy (also suggestive of concomitant AD) showed a numerical difference similar to that seen between the older versus younger patients, but did not attain statistical significance.


Consistent with trials evaluating other cholinesterase inhibitors, rivastigmine did not provide consistent efficacy in probable VaD. The efficacy apparent on cognitive outcomes was derived from effects in older patients likely to have concomitant Alzheimer pathology. This is supportive of an existing argument that the putative cholinergic deficit in VaD reflects the presence of concomitant Alzheimer pathology.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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