To better understand responses in the large number of US-based patients included in a global trial of donepezil 23 mg/d versus 10 mg/d for moderate-to-severe Alzheimer's disease (AD), post hoc exploratory analyses were performed to assess the efficacy and safety in US and non-US (rest of the world [RoW]) patient subgroups. In both subgroups, donepezil 23 mg/d was associated with significantly greater cognitive benefits than donepezil 10 mg/d. Significant global function benefits of donepezil 23 mg/d over 10 mg/d were also observed in the US subgroup only. Compared with RoW patients, US patients had relatively more severe AD, had been treated with donepezil 10 mg/d for longer periods prior to the start of the study, and a higher proportion took concomitant memantine. In both subgroups, donepezil had acceptable tolerability; overall incidence of treatment-emergent adverse events was higher in patients receiving donepezil 23 mg/d compared with donepezil 10 mg/d. © 2012 The Author(s).