There is a review on medication for Alzheimer’s Disease which is freely available here. The review is from 2006 and so it is a little dated but still contains a useful summary of the data for that period that can be used with other sources to interpret more recent studies particularly as there are a number of general principles that are used in the analysis. The researchers have a clearly structured methodology and outline the databases they have consulted. They aim to answer four questions: How do the different drugs compare in efficacyand effectiveness?, How do they compare in time to effect?, What does a comparison of adverse effects reveal? and how are efficacy, effectiveness and adverse effects influenced by a number of other variables including demographics? The researchers have reviewed a large number of documents and so the results are necessarily complex although well summarised in table 8. There are a number of interesting points that can be picked up along the way – for instance the use of memantine in Germany as far back as 1989 or the problems inherent in the use of last observation carried forward (LOCF) in the analysis of a degenerative condition. The clear and detailed structure of the methodology and the review itself offer a useful template for further related reviews.
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