Cognitive impairment is a common phenomenon usually seen in old people. It is not an illness; rather it can be a signal for other medical conditions.
A recently conducted clinical trial has explored the use of a drug known as tadalafil for the treatment of cognitive impairment due to blood vessel disease.
Cognitive impairment is when a person has trouble remembering, learning new things, concentrating, or making decisions that affect their everyday life. Vascular cognitive impairment (VCI) is a condition where cognitive abilities such as memory, attention, and problem-solving are affected due to reduced blood flow to the brain. The condition is caused by a variety of factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and smoking. These diseases damage the blood vessels of the brain which results in this cognitive disorder. There is currently no effective treatment for VCI.
Tadalafil is a drug commonly used to treat erectile dysfunction and pulmonary arterial hypertension. The drug works by relaxing the blood vessels, which increases blood flow to certain areas of the body. It has been hypothesized that tadalafil might also be effective in increasing blood flow to the brain by dilating the cerebral blood vessels. However, strong clinical data to justify its use in VCI is not available.
A recent clinical trial has sought to test out this hypothesis by searching for the safety and efficacy of tadalafil in the treatment of patients with vascular cognitive impairment.
The clinical research study involved 55 participants with a diagnosis of vascular cognitive impairment. These patients were divided into two groups. One group received tadalafil 20 mg while the other group received a placebo (a clinically ineffective drug) on two visits more than a week apart. The changes in the blood flow to the brain were measured in all the patients.
The results of this clinical trial showed that the blood flow in the brain was similar in both groups. It demonstrated that tadalafil did not improve the cerebral blood flow in these patients as hypothesized by the study. Hence, it can be deduced that tadalafil would not benefit patients with vascular cognitive impairment.
While the results of the clinical study are disappointing, they provide important information for future research into treatments for VCI.
In conclusion, the PASTIS clinical trial is a significant study that tested the potential use of tadalafil for vascular cognitive impairment. The results of the clinical study suggest that tadalafil is not an effective treatment for VCI as it does not improve the blood flow to the brain.
Journal of Alzheimer’s Association, Feb-08-22