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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Medications Used to Treat Alcoholism

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved four medications to help treat alcoholism: acamprosate, disulfiram, naltrexone, and topiramate. However, these medications may not work for every client. That’s why talking to your healthcare professional before taking them is essential.


Acamprosate increases abstinence rates among clients with alcohol use disorder. It is one of the recently approved treatments for alcohol dependence in the U.S. If you know of someone who might benefit from rehabilitation from alcohol abuse disorder, please visit website for more detailed information and resources.

Here is how it works:

  • Acamprosate reduces the adverse effects people are likely to experience when they decide to reduce alcohol use, which can lead to relapse. 
  • It corrects the underlying neurochemical changes caused by chronic drinking, helping the brain to restore its normal function.

Inform your doctor if you are allergic to sulfites or any of the tablets’ ingredients before taking it. People with the following conditions should avoid the medicine:

  • People who are breastfeeding
  • People with allergic reactions to Campral or sulfites
  • Clients who suffer from depression
  • People with kidney disease
  • Someone who is pregnant or trying to get pregnant.


The first medicine to be approved by the U.S. to treat alcohol dependence was disulfiram. It causes severe adverse reactions when someone taking the medication consumes alcohol. Some of the unpleasant effects include:

  • Headache
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Sweating
  • Chest pain
  • Flushing
  • Sweating.

Many of the effects mentioned above can last an hour or longer. Here are a few things you should take into consideration before you begin taking the medication:

  • People who are on the verge of quitting alcoholism but cannot use acamprosate and naltrexone due to complications or other medical conditions are encouraged to use this medicine.
  • The treatment is not recommended for people with coronary heart disease or psychosis.
  • After one stops drinking, they should wait at least 12 hours before taking the medicine.


Naltrexone works by decreasing the craving for alcohol. It works in the brain by dismissing the pleasurable feeling that comes with getting high.  It can be injected or taken orally.

Some of the primary adverse effects of the injectable and the oral version of naltrexone include:

  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness.

Clients with significant liver disease and those who require opiate medications to manage pain cannot take the medicine. Clients should be free of opioids for between seven to ten days before taking naltrexone. Observing this rule will help them avoid precipitating an opioid-withdrawal syndrome.


Topiramate was used in the recent past to treat seizures and headaches. However, doctors now use it to treat alcohol use disorder. Topiramate reduces alcohol cravings as well as anxiety and depression present during the initial stage of alcohol withdrawal.

Medication is one of the approaches medical professionals use to help clients with unhealthy alcohol use decrease their alcohol intake. It plays a vital role in managing alcohol withdrawal symptoms by changing how the body and brain react and managing the long-term effects. 

However, the effectiveness of the medications varies from one person to another. That’s why it’s essential to visit an alcohol treatment facility for professional help.

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HBC Editors
HBC Editorshttp://www.healthcarebusinessclub.com
HBC editors are a group of healthcare business professionals from diversified backgrounds. At HBC, we present the latest business news, tips, trending topics, interviews in healthcare business field, HBC editors are expanding day by day to cover most of the topics in the middle east and Africa, and other international regions.

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