The International Journal of Psychosocial Rehabilitation


Naltrexone, Acamprosate Show Promise Against Alcoholism

  Agency for Health Care Policy and Research
April '99

Two newer medications, naltrexone and acamprosate, show promise in treating alcoholism, according to an evidence report, summarized in the April 14, 1999 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. The findings are drawn from a recently released analysis of the available scientific evidence on pharmaceutical agents - both traditional and newer - used in the treatment of alcohol dependence, and their effect on factors such as craving, relapse, abstinence, and total drinking or non-drinking days.

Naltrexone has been in use in the United States for the treatment of alcoholism only since 1994.Acamprosate is widely used in Europe and has been granted investigational drug status within this country by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Clinical trials are currently underway.

The evidence report, Pharmacotherapy for Alcohol Dependence, was prepared by the Research Triangle Institute (RTI) and the University of North Carolina (UNC) for the U.S. Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR).

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