Medication for Alcoholism: Disulfiram, Naltrexone, Campral, Acamprosate

You may also be more sensitive to the side-effects (breathing difficulties and circulatory problems). We invite healthcare professionals including physicians, physician assistants, nurses, pharmacists, and psychologists to complete a post-test after reviewing this article to earn FREE continuing education (CME/CE) credit. This CME/CE credit opportunity is jointly provided by the Postgraduate eco sober house review Institute for Medicine and NIAAA. The Navigator will steer you toward evidence-based treatment, which applies knowledge gained through decades of carefully designed scientific research. If you are seeking treatment for yourself, you are taking an important step in your route to recovery. You may wish to ask someone you trust to help you through the process and for support along the way.

  1. “Acamprosate is designed to level out those abnormalities and provide some stability.”
  2. Previously, Mason et al, have shown that treatment with nalmefene was effective in preventing relapse to heavy drinking in comparison to placebo.
  3. Under federal law 42 CFR 8.12, opioid treatment programs (OTPs) must be able to provide counseling, along with medical, vocational, educational, and other assessment and treatment services.
  4. Memantine induces expression of BDNF in several brain regions, including the striatum (Jeanblanc et al., 2014).
  5. This study suggests that there was no overall effect of gabapentin on drinking or craving and that it was well tolerated (Myrick et al., 2007).

Its metabolite (O-desmethylvenlafaxine) also acts as another antidepressant drug called desvenlafaxine and sold under the brand name Pristiq (Pae, 2011). Venlafaxine works on both serotoninergic and adrenergic systems, and reduces the cataplexy (a form of muscle weakness) episodes in patients with the sleep disorder narcolepsy (Grothe et al., 2004). It is also reported as a serotonin-norepinephrine-dopamine reuptake inhibitor (SNDRI) based on its dose-dependent effects on various neurotransmitter systems (, 2008; Goeringer et al., 2001; Wellington & Perry, 2001). Using opioids in the 7 to 14 days before you start receiving treatment may cause you to suddenly have symptoms of opioid withdrawal when you receive treatment. Researchers funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, a Federal Government research agency, reviewed studies on medicines to treat alcohol dependence and alcohol use disorder published between January 1970 and October 2013.

Types of Professionals Involved in Care

Naltrexone belongs to a class of drugs known as opioid antagonists and works by blocking the mu opioid receptor. It blocks the effects of alcohol and opioid medications, preventing the intoxication these substances cause. Naltrexone also modifies how the hypothalamus, pituitary gland and adrenal gland (hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, HPA axis) interact to suppress the amount of alcohol consumed. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved several different medications to treat Alcohol and Opioid Use Disorders. These relieve the withdrawal symptoms and psychological cravings that cause chemical imbalances in the body. Recent studies using pharmacometabolomics offer insights into optimizing acamprosate treatment.

Behavioral Treatments

Both pregabalin and placebo showed similar efficacy according to alterations of scores of the AWS, clinical institute withdrawal assessment for alcohol revised (CIWA-Ar) scores and neuropsychological scales. The frequency of adverse events and dropouts did not differ between the treatment groups and demonstrated the relative safety of pregabalin in the treatment of AWS (Forg et al., 2012). Alcohol dependence increases the risk of depression in patients, causing damage and deficiencies in brain function, resulting in cognitive function impairment.

What is alcohol use disorder?

However, there is no drug that completely antagonizes the adverse effects of excessive amounts of alcohol. This review summarizes the drugs which are available and approved by the FDA and their mechanisms of action as well as the medications that are under various phases of preclinical and clinical trials. In addition, the repurposing of the FDA approved drugs, such as anticonvulsants, antipsychotics, antidepressants and other medications, to prevent alcoholism and treat AUDs and their potential target mechanisms are summarized. Previously it has been shown that meth addiction: symptoms getting help detox treatment and more blockade of ?-1 adrenergic receptors suppresses excessive alcohol consumption after acute withdrawal in ethanol-dependent rats. In ethanol-dependent animals, prazosin (1.5 and 2.0 mg/kg) was effective in suppressing alcohol consumption, suggesting the involvement of noradrenergic receptors in the excessive alcohol drinking during acute withdrawal in ethanol-dependent rats (Walker et al., 2008). In nondependent rats, only 2.0 mg/kg dose was effective and at 0.25 mg/kg doze prazosin mediates anxiolytic effect on ethanol self-administration in nondependent rats.

Ondansetron is a selective 5-HT3 receptor antagonist, with low affinity to dopamine receptors, approved by FDA in the year 1991 and sold under the trade name Zofran. It is generally used for the treatment of nausea and vomiting during chemotherapy and radiation therapy in many cancer patients. In addition to the FDA approved medications, there are many other medications available. These agents include Fluoxetine, Duloxetine, Tiagabine, Levitriacetam, Gabapentin, Pregabalin, Sertraline, Citalopram, Ritanserin, Aripiprazole, Ondansetron, Quetiapine, Nalmefene and Topiramate.