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June 24, 1983

Anticoagulant Therapy for Senile Dementia

Author Affiliations


JAMA. 1983;249(24):3305. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03330480021018

To the Editor.—  In reply to the letter of Rabins et al (1983;249:353) regarding the use of anticoagulant therapy for senility, I would like to clarify some points. It is true that our studies were not "controlled," except when some patients served as their own control, when their conditions worsened when anticoagulant therapy was discontinued and improved when therapy began again. But there was a control study done in Montreal by Ratner et al1,2 that confirms my findings of benefit from anticoagulant therapy in senility. Their study also confirms our findings as to the relative safety of anticoagulant therapy in senile persons—the Montreal group had no complications during a one-year period.In regard to the risks of falling, in 18 years, only one of our patients (and she suffered from cortical blindness and severe confusion) had serious complications from a fall, and she fell down a whole flight of