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ReVia, Naltrexone (generic): Frequently Asked Questions

What is naltrexone?

Naltrexone is a medication that blocks the effects of drugs known as opioids (a class that includes morphine, heroin or codeine). It competes with these drugs for opioid receptors in the brain. It was originally used to treat dependence on opioid drugs but has recently been approved by the FDA as treatment for alcoholism. ...
Source: www.well.com
Naltrexone is a medication that blocks the effects of drugs known as opioids (a class that includes morphine, heroin and codeine). It was originally used to treat the negative effects of opiates and now also treats dependence on opioid drugs. Naltrexone medication is approved by the FDA as part of a comprehensive treatment for alcoholism. ...
Naltrexone is a medication that blocks the pleasurable effects of opiates. In other words, someone who is taking naltrexone cannot get high if they use heroin, oxys, percs, or any other opiates. It is not addictive and can help you maintain a drug-free lifestyle. I heard that Naltrexone will make me sick. This is a common misconception of Naltrexone's use. Naltrexone is not intended to make you sick. It is intended to prevent you from getting high. You would not start Naltrexone until after you have detoxed from opiates. ...

What Is the relationship of naltrexone to AA?

There is no contradiction between participation in AA and taking naltrexone. Naltrexone is not addictive and does not produce any "high" or pleasant effects. It can contribute to achievement of an abstinence goal by reducing the craving or compulsion to drink, particularly during early phases of recovery. It is most likely to be effective when the patient's goal is to stop drinking altogether.
Source: www.well.com

What is Low Dose Naltrexone?

Naltrexone is short for Naltrexone Hydrochloride (C20H23NO4-HCl), an opiate antagonist. Naltrexone was approved by the FDA (at a 50mg dosage) in 1984 for opiate addiction, and again in 1995 for alcohol abuse. At a much lower dose (1.75-4.5mg), it has been gaining popularity as a treatment for symptoms of auto-immune disorders such as Multiple Sclerosis. Low Dose Naltrexone is administered orally, usually in capsule form.

What is the Naltrexone implant?

This is a special formulation of Naltrexone, which is designed to release slowly over a 6-12 week period. It is placed under the patient's skin and so it is effective and does not allow the patient to forget or skip their medicine. We highly recommend it because it is so effective. There are some potential side effects with the Naltrexone Implant including infection, irritation or inflammation and sometimes even some skin breakdown over the implant site.Licensed pharmacists manufacture the implants for us. ...
This is a special formulation of Naltrexone, which is designed to release slowly over a 6-12 week period. It is placed under the patient’s skin and so it is effective and does not allow the patient to forget or skip their medicine. We highly recommend it because it is so effective. A licensed pharmacist compounds the implants for us. ...

What is Naltrexone (blockers)?

Naltrexone is used when someone has stopped using heroin or other opiates. It blocks the effects of these drugs, so if someone used heroin after taking Naltrexone it would have no effect. This can help prevent someone from slipping back to heroin use after they have stopped. It could be dangerous for someone to take Naltrexone if they have taken heroin or other opiates in the past two weeks.

Is naltrexone safe to use?

Naltrexone is an FDA-approved drug that has been on the market since 1985 for the treatment of opiate addiction and since 1994 for the treatment of alcoholism. Naltrexone has also been approved in over a dozen countries and is prescribed to thousands of people each year through¬out the world. Studies show that in doses typically used to treat addiction, naltrexone is very safe.

What are the side effects of naltrexone?

Mild nausea, irritability, fatigue, and dizziness may occur initially. Reducing the amount of naltrexone, taking it with food, or taking it before bed can diminish these complaints.
In a large open-label safety study on naltrexone, conducted by Dupont Pharma in 570 individuals with alcoholism, the most common side effects affected only a small minority of people; they included the following: Nausea (10 percent of participants) Headache (7 percent of participants) Depression (5 to 7 percent of participants) Dizziness (4 percent of participants) Fatigue (4 percent of participants) Insomnia (3 percent of participants) Anxiety (2 percent of participants) Sleepiness (2 percent of participants). ...

Is it possible to become addicted to naltrexone?

Naltrexone is not habit forming or a drug of abuse. It does not cause users to become physically or psychologically dependent.

Should naltrexone be taken with a meal?

There is no information that taking naltrexone with or without meals makes any difference in effect.

What is naltrexone, and how does it work?

Naltrexone is a medication that blocks the effects of drugs known as opiates, or narcotics (a class that includes morphine, heroin, or codeine). It competes with these drugs for opioid receptors in the brain. Originally used to treat dependence on opiate drugs, it now has also been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as treatment for alcohol dependence. People who are dependent on opiate drugs, such as heroin or morphine, must stop their drug use at least 7 days prior to starting naltrexone. ...

How long should I stay on naltrexone?

If naltrexone is tolerated and the patient is successful in reducing or stopping drinking, the recommended initial course of treatment is 3 months. At that time the patient and clinical staff should evaluate the need for further treatment on the basis of degree of improvement, degree of continued concerns about relapse and level of improvement in areas of functioning other than alcohol use. ...

How long does naltrexone take to work?

Naltrexone's effects on blocking opioids occurs shortly after taking the first dose. Findings to date suggest that the effects of naltrexone in helping patients remain abstinent and avoid relapse to alcohol use also occur early.
Source: www.well.com

What does it feel like to be on naltrexone?

Aside from side effects, which are usually short-lived and mild, patients usually report that they are largely unaware of being on medications. Naltrexone usually has no psychological effects and patients don't feel either "high" or "down" while they are on naltrexone. It is not addicting. While it does seem to reduce alcohol craving, it does not interfere with the experience of other types of pleasure.
Source: www.well.com
Patients generally report that they are largely unaware of being on medication. Naltrexone usually has no mood-altering effects; most patients feel neither "high" nor "down. " While it does seem to reduce alcohol and drug cravings, it does not interfere with the experience of other types of pleasures in most patients.

Why does naltrexone help for alcoholism?

While the precise mechanism of action for naltrexone's effect is unknown, reports from successfully treated patients suggest three kinds of effects. First, naltrexone can reduce craving, which is the urge or desire to drink. Second, naltrexone helps patients remain abstinent. Third, naltrexone can interfere with the tendency to want to drink more if a recovering patient slips and has a drink.
Source: www.well.com

Is naltrexone like Antabuse® (disulfiram)?

Unlike Antabuse® (disulfiram), naltrexone does not produce an adverse effect in combination with alcohol. Naltrexone in and of itself is a passive substance with no stimulating or tranquilizing effects. Most patients do not notice any effect of naltrexone, other than observing that their thoughts and behaviors move them to drink less or abstain.

How does naltrexone work?

Naltrexone appears to work by preventing the neurophysical reinforcement of alcohol craving that ordinarily occurs from alcohol consumption by blocking the opiate receptors. As a result of these blocked receptors, the urge to drink is gradually weakened, and alcohol becomes less of a charged or concerning issue. Naltrexone does not, however, reduce intoxication, but may instead slightly increase the detrimental effects of alcohol on driving and similar activities. ...

How much Naltrexone should a patient take?

Attending physicians should prescribe Naltrexone based on many factors, such as the patient’s liver function and opiate dependency history.

How long should I be on Naltrexone therapy?

We believe strongly that patients should be on Naltrexone therapy for at least twelve months. This prevents them from relapsing back to narcotic use and gives the patients a chance to start making changes in their lives and building up a support program. We highly recommend at least two Naltrexone implants and then switching to oral Naltrexone for the balance of 12 months.
We strongly believe that patients should be on Naltrexone therapy for at least six to twelve months. This provides a long enough period for patients’ brains to heal and for patients to start making the necessary changes in their lives. Recent research has shown that it takes at least 12 months for the brain to fully heal and we know that it takes at least this amount of time for people to learn about alcoholism and recovery, build up a support system, and fully integrate all of the recovery changes into their lives.

What is Naltrexone Therapy and why is it important?

We believe that the ultimate goal of any opiate detoxification program is to have patients on Naltrexone. Naltrexone is a pure narcotic antagonist. That is, it attaches to the endorphin or opiate receptors in the brain and completely blocks them. This means that if someone tries to use any kind of opiate while they are on Naltrexone, they feel no effect because all of the receptors are completely blocked. While Naltrexone is in the body, it is virtually impossible to relapse. ...

What happens after Naltrexone Implantation?

We believe strongly that detoxification without appropriate follow-up and treatment is almost always unsuccessful. Our staff meets with all our patients and their families to determine the optimum treatment program following detoxification. We insist that all of our patients be willing to participate in an appropriate treatment program as part of their after- care. This should include 12-step programs and professional therapy. ...

What is Naltrexone Therapy and why is it important for alcoholism?

The ultimate goal of recovery from alcoholism is abstinence and learning how to be happy. We believe that the cornerstones of a recovery program include 12 step support groups and professional counseling. There are now also a number of medicines that can assist in achieving and maintaining abstinence. Naltrexone is probably the most powerful of these medicines. Naltrexone is a drug that attaches to the opiate receptors in the brain and blocks them. ...

Should I take naltrexone?

If you are having trouble controlling your drinking or drug use, then you should consider taking naltrexone. Naltrexone is not a crutch or a cure-all, but it makes it much easier for people to stop using alcohol and narcotics.

What if I drink while on naltrexone?

You will feel neither “high” nor nauseous, however, you will experience the other effects of alcohol including impaired motor function. Naltrexone may help you avoid drinking to excess if you slip and have one drink.

What will happen if a patient drinks alcohol while taking naltrexone?

Naltrexone does not reduce the effects of alcohol that impair coordination and judgment. Naltrexone may reduce the feeling of intoxication and the desire to drink more, but it will not cause a severe physical response to drinking.
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