Generic Name: Naltrexone

  • What is Vivitrol?

    Vivitrol is used to treat alcohol dependence.

  • What is the most important information I should know about Vivitrol?

    Vivitrol may cause damage to your liver. If you already have liver problems, tell your doctor before beginning dependency treatment with this drug.

    Vivitrol also may cause depression and suicidal thoughts.

    Vivitrol is not for the treatment of opiate-dependency.

    Your doctor may perform a naloxone challenge test to see if Vivitrol is safe for you.

    Taking other opioid medications in large amounts while on Vivitrol is very dangerous, as it may induce serious injuries, coma, or death.

    Vivitrol does not eliminate or diminish alcohol withdrawal symptoms.

    Vivitrol may cause allergic pneumonia and you may experience symptoms of wheezing, coughing, and painful breathing. If this occurs, you should contact your doctor immediately.

    If you feel intense or prolonged pain, swelling, or changes in skin color at the injection site, notify your doctor immediately.

    Notify your doctor immediately if you have any changes in mood, feel depressed or have thoughts of harming yourself or ending your life.

  • Who should not take Vivitrol?

    If you are taking an opioid (such as heroin); are dependent on opioids; are going through opiate withdrawal; if you have tested positive for opiates in your urine.

    You should not take Vivitrol if you are allergic to any of its ingredients or if you have liver problems.

  • What should I tell my doctor before I take the first dose of Vivitrol?

    Tell your doctor about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are currently taking. Also, talk to your doctor about your complete medical history, especially if you are opiate-dependent, have any liver or kidney conditions, or bleeding problems.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your doctor uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your doctor may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your doctor's approval.

    Adults: The recommended dosage of Vivitrol is 380 milligrams (mg) injected every 4 weeks by your doctor.

  • How should I take Vivitrol?

    You should stop drinking alcohol before starting Vivitrol.

    Recovery programs such as counseling are effective with Vivitrol treatment.

  • What should I avoid while taking Vivitrol?

    Vivitrol may make you feel dizzy. Do not engage in any potentially dangerous activities, such as driving a car, until you know how Vivitrol affects you.

    Avoid nursing or becoming pregnant; if you become pregnant while on Vivitrol, contact your doctor immediately.

  • What are possible food and drug interactions associated with Vivitrol?

    If Vivitrol is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Vivitrol with the following: antidiarrheals or antitussives (cough medicines). If you have used opioid medications in the past or street drugs such as heroin, you will be more sensitive to lower doses of opioids after the completion of Vivitrol treatment, which may lead to an overdose.

  • What are the possible side effects of Vivitrol?

    Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this drug.

    Side effects may include: cramps, decreased appetite/anorexia, dizziness, vomiting, dry mouth, fatigue, headache, injection-site reactions (redness/swelling), nausea, stomach pain, thoughts of harming yourself

  • Can I receive Vivitrol if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    The effects of Vivitrol during pregnancy and breastfeeding are unknown. Tell your doctor immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of Vivitrol?

    Contact your doctor if you realized you have missed (or will need to reschedule) an appointment for an injection.

  • How should I store Vivitrol?

    Your doctor will store this medication for you.

Meet the Pharmacists

I'm Shereen A. Gharbia, PharmD. Welcome to PDR Health!

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