Alzheimer's disease symptoms

About Alzheimer's symptoms.

One of the main symptoms of Alzheimer's disease is memory loss, but there may also be others. As your loved one's Alzheimer's becomes more severe, these symptoms may become worse and your loved one may experience more of them. In addition, Alzheimer's affects function and behavior.

It's important to recognize the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.

Below are some symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. If any of these symptoms describe your loved one, be sure to discuss it with the doctor.

People with Alzheimer's disease may:

  • Not remember details about themselves or family members
  • Not recognize you or other family members
  • Not be able to identify what they like to eat or cook
  • Not be able to recognize and use a spoon or cup appropriately
  • Have difficulty identifying what month or day of the week it is
  • Have difficulty recalling in which city or state they live
  • Not be able to recall important details such as their address or telephone number
  • Have trouble distinguishing shapes and colors
  • Have a hard time understanding basic directions like "follow me" or "please sit here"
  • Argue more often
  • Believe things are real when they are not
  • Wander, often at night
  • Have difficulty managing money
  • Show compulsive or repetitive behavior
  • Lose interest in conversation
  • Have a hard time dressing for the weather or occasion
  • Forget to shave or shower
  • Have trouble with tasks such as washing dishes or setting the table
  • Need help with toileting
  • Not be able to draw a circle or square
  • Not be able to speak or write their name
  • Have problems dressing themselves
  • Have problems with speech or may not speak at all
  • Forget appointments
  • Have difficulty cooking or following recipes


ARICEPT® (donepezil HCl) is a prescription medicine to treat mild, moderate, and severe Alzheimer's disease.


Before starting on ARICEPT 23 mg/day, patients should be on ARICEPT 10 mg/day for at least 3 months. The starting dose of ARICEPT is 5 mg/day and can be increased to 10 mg/day after 4‑6 weeks. Please take ARICEPT as prescribed by the doctor.


  • ARICEPT (donepezil HCl) is not for everyone, including people who are allergic to any ingredients in ARICEPT or to medicines that contain piperidines.

  • Tell the doctor that the patient takes ARICEPT before they have any procedure that may require anesthesia, including dental and medical procedures or surgery.

  • ARICEPT may cause slow heartbeat and fainting. This happens more often in people with heart problems. Call the doctor right away if the patient faints while taking ARICEPT. People may also have seizures while taking ARICEPT. They may also have difficulty passing urine. Lung problems, including asthma, may worsen with the use of ARICEPT.

  • In a study, more side effects were seen with ARICEPT 23 mg than with ARICEPT 10 mg. Many more people taking ARICEPT 23 mg experienced nausea and vomiting than those taking ARICEPT 10 mg. These side effects may get better after the patient takes ARICEPT for a while.

  • People at risk for stomach ulcers or who take certain other medicines, such as aspirin or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), should tell their doctor because serious stomach problems, such as bleeding, may get worse.

  • Other side effects that were seen more often with ARICEPT 23 mg were stomach ulcers, gastrointestinal bleeding, and weight loss. People of lower weight (less than 121 lbs) may have increased nausea, vomiting, and weight loss when taking ARICEPT 23 mg.

  • Other side effects of ARICEPT may include diarrhea, difficulty sleeping, vomiting, or muscle cramps. Some people may feel tired or may have loss of appetite.

  • Tell the doctor if your loved one takes nonprescription or prescription medicines, including those used to treat Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease; anticholinergic medicines, such as allergy or cold medicine; medicines to treat bladder or bowel spasms; or certain asthma medicines.