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Besides taking care of your loved one's physical needs, you may also need to help him make decisions about money. With some planning the two of you can make the process run smoothly.

Your first step is to make sure you've got the legal documents you need to let you act in your loved one's best interests. An attorney who specializes in elder law can give you advice that's tailored to your situation.

Power of attorney. This is a document that lets your loved one give you the authority you to make legal decisions when he's no longer capable of making them on his own.

There is no standard power of attorney. Each one is geared toward a person's specific situation. Make sure you understand all the terms of this document because it spells out exactly what authority you do and don't have.

Durable power of attorney for health care. You may alsohear this called a "health care proxy."It lets you make all decisions about your loved one's health care. For example, you'll be allowed to choose doctors, medical treatments, and make end-of-life decisions. But this document only goes into effect if your loved one is no longer able to make the decisions for himself.

Living will. This lets your loved one say in advance what kind of medical care he would like to get -- and also what kind of life-support procedures he doesn't want. It's used if your loved one becomes terminally ill and is unable to make his wishes known. A terminal illness means your loved one's doctor believes there's no chance of recovery.

Living wills can also be used if your loved one becomes permanently unconscious. Two doctors need to state that he has no reasonable chance of regaining consciousness or the ability to make decisions. Laws on living wills vary from state to state.

Living trust. This lets you create a trust and appoint someone to carefully invest and manage money after your loved one is no longer able to do this on his own.

Will: This document lists the people who will inherit your loved one's money and property. It also names the "executor" of the will -- the person who makes sure his estate is distributed correctly.

Guardian/conservator. If you'relegally appointed your loved one's "guardian" or "conservator," you're given the authority to make decisions over things like where he lives, what kind of care and medical treatment he should get, and also the right to manage his financial affairs. An attorney can give you advice about when this might be needed.

There is no evidence that NAMENDA XR® prevents or slows the underlying disease process in patients with Alzheimer's disease.

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IMPORTANT RISK INFORMATION

Who should NOT take NAMENDA XR?

NAMENDA XR should not be taken by anyone who is allergic (hypersensitive) to memantine, the active substance in NAMENDA XR, or who has had a bad reaction to NAMENDA XR or any of its ingredients.

What should be discussed with the healthcare provider before taking NAMENDA XR?

Before starting NAMENDA XR, talk to the healthcare provider about all of the patient's past and present medical conditions, including:

  • Seizure disorders
  • Difficulty passing urine
  • Liver, kidney, or bladder problems

If the patient is taking other medications (including those without a prescription), ask the healthcare provider if NAMENDA XR is right for the patient.

  • Certain medications, changes in diet, or medical conditions may affect the amount of NAMENDA XR in the body and possibly increase side effects.

What are the possible side effects of NAMENDA XR?

The most common side effects associated with NAMENDA XR treatment are headache, diarrhea, and dizziness. This is not a complete list of side effects.

NAMENDA XR® (memantine hydrochloride) extended-release capsules are approved for the treatment of moderate to severe Alzheimer's disease. NAMENDA XR is available by prescription only.

Please see full Prescribing Information, including Patient Information.