Top Menu

Two Medications Good First Option for Treating Alcoholism, Study Finds

/By

An analysis of studies that evaluated two medications used to treat alcoholism concludes they are a good first option for people who want treatment but wish to avoid an inpatient program.

The analysis looked at acamprosate (Campral) and naltrexone (ReVia), Reuters reports. The medications may be helpful for people in different stages of recovery, because they have different effects on the brain, the researchers report in the journal Addiction.

The researchers looked at 64 trials of the two drugs, which included a total of 11,000 people. They found acamprosate was better at helping people who were not current drinkers stay sober, while naltrexone was more effective in helping people cut back on heavy drinking and avoid cravings.

Both drugs were more effective when used after participants had not been drinking for at least a few days before starting treatment, or had been through a detox program, the article noted.

Lead researcher Natalya Maisel from the VA Palo Alto Health Care System in Menlo Park, California, found that eight people dependent on alcohol would need to be treated with acamprosate in order for one additional person to quit drinking. Nine people would need to take naltrexone in order to keep one from starting to drink heavily again.

3 Responses to this article

  1. JWHIII / October 30, 2012 at 3:42 am

    I also meant to add that the FDA keeps plugging these worthless medications due to the money they spent on the research trials. I see this as a means of misdirection by which to place focus on medications they’ve invested in which don’t work, while burying the one which does (baclofen).

  2. JWHIII / October 30, 2012 at 3:30 am

    “The researchers looked at 64 trials of the two drugs, which included a total of 11,000 people. They found acamprosate was better at helping people who were not current drinkers stay sober, while naltrexone was more effective in helping people cut back on heavy drinking and avoid cravings.”

    I was prescribed acomprosate while still drinking and it did nothing for the daily cravings. If one were able to remain abstinent, why would they require a medication to stay sober? As for naltrexone, the first dose made me sick for two days! “Cut back on heavy drinking”? Isn’t the whole point of taking a medication under these circumstances, to alleviate craving and discontinue drinking altogether?

    “Both drugs were more effective when used after participants had not been drinking for at least a few days before starting treatment, or had been through a detox program, the article noted.”

    If one can remain abstinent from alcohol for “a few days”, why would a medication be required? A daily drinker needs something more than what these feeble medications offer. They’re categorized as mere craving reducers. Why waste time with these when a complete craving suppressant is available?

    Baclofen offers an effortless pursuit of abstinence in that it completely removes cravings and preoccupation with alcohol. It liberates with indifference, which enables anyone to pursue sobriety with success.

    But because the patent of this generic medication expired years ago, the FDA isn’t willing to invest the funds necessary for approval testing. From my experience, acomprosate, naltrexone and topiramate are absolutely worthless medications for relieving one of overwhelming craving for alcohol – especially on a daily basis.

    But baclofen completely eliminates thoughts, proccupation and cravings for alcohol altogether – it grants one absolute indifference and liberates them from the stronghold alcohol once had on them.

    Naltrexone and acomprosate? Topiramate did more for reducing my daily alcohol intake than either of these two medications ever did. But even topiramate did not eliminate my constant craving as did baclofen.

  3. Leslie Basden / October 29, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    Stats in the last paragraph make no sense to me. Nine would need to take a drug for the tenth to stop drinking?

Leave a Reply

Please read our comment policy and guidelines before you submit a comment. Your email address will not be published. Thank you for visiting Drugfree.org


eight − = 1

Disclaimer:
Reproduction in whole or in part of this publication is strictly prohibited without prior consent. Photographic rights remain the property of Join Together and the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. For reproduction inquiries, please e-mail jointogether@drugfree.org.