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Drug Class: Commonly Known As: Category:
Donepezil Hydrochloride Aricept Adult

Donepezil - Side Effects, Precautions, and Contraindications

What side effects can Donepezil cause?

Potential side effects

All medications may cause side effects. However, many people do not experience them.

Most of the side effects listed here will improve with time. Speak with your doctor or pharmacist if they persist, become bothersome or worsen.


Side effectsWhat to do about it
Poor appetite, nausea, vomitingTake the medication after meals. Eat small but frequent meals to minimize bloating after a meal. Avoid food that is too rich, spicy or has strong smells.
DiarrhoeaMake sure you remain well hydrated by drinking plenty of water
HeadacheConsult your doctor or pharmacist if you need any painkillers

Do not drive or operate any machinery.

Discuss with your doctor if you can take your medication at a different time of the day. 

DizzinessGet up slowly from a lying or sitting position

Avoid daytime naps. Limit caffeine intake. Keep a regular sleeping schedule. Instead of looking at electronic screens before bedtime, choose other relaxing activities such as reading a book or listening to calm music.

Discuss with your doctor if you can take your medication at a different time of the day. 

Muscle crampsConsult your doctor if it becomes bothersome
Loss of bladder control (urinary incontinence)There may be other causes for this condition. Consult your doctor for further information.

Serious side effects

Seek medical help as soon as possible if you have any of the following signs or symptoms.

  • Allergy such as rashes, swelling of lips/face/throat, difficulty breathing
  • Muscle pain, dark urine, fever

Take note that the side effects listed here are not exhaustive. Do seek medical attention if you have other symptoms that you think may be related to the medication.

Before taking Donepezil , what precautions must I follow?

​What do I need to tell my doctor before I take this medication?

  • Drug allergies
  • Pre-existing medical conditions such as heart problems, slow heartbeat, fits (seizures) and stomach ulcers
  • Whether you are taking any other medications, supplements or traditional medicines. Some of them may affect how this medication works.

What food or medicine must I avoid when I take Donepezil ?

​This medicine may interact with a number of medicines. Inform your doctor if you are taking other medicines or supplements.

Donepezil - Additional Information

​What are the things I need to know or look out for while on this medication?

  • Avoid driving or any other activities that requires concentration until you see how this drug affects you
  • Inform your other healthcare professionals that you are on this medication as well.
  • Discuss with your doctor or pharmacist before you take any other medications or natural products
  • Do not share your medications with others
  • Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions about your medication
  • Updated on 11/2/2018 12:00:00 AM
  • Article contributed by Changi General Hospital Changi General Hospital
The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth

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