Understanding The Side Effects And Benefits Of Vivitrol Injection

As significant advancement in medical science was paired with a better understanding of substance abuse, addiction, and physical dependence, new treatment options began to emerge to help people who are struggling with these problems. One recent development in this area is the approval by the drug agency of a medication that effectively deals with opioid addiction and alcohol dependence. This medication is called Vivitrol. Vivitrol has been found to efficiently treat opioid addiction and alcohol dependence by blocking the euphoria related to opioid usage and alcohol intoxication. The key benefit of this innovative scientific medication is that it is administered just once every month.

How Does Vivitrol Injection Work?

An illegal substance or drug like heroin, also known as an opioid agonist, typically works by activating and binding to opioid receptors. When Vivitrol injection is administered, it competitively binds similarly at the same receptor sites. By doing so, it stops other opioid drugs from activating. This in effect prevents the euphoria or usual high that comes with opioid use. With these pleasurable impacts gone, an opioid user is less likely to consume the intoxicating drug or substance. Without this reward, there isn’t any motivation to sustain the behavior. It is paramount to note that physical dependence and addiction are multidimensional issues. Vivitrol does not cure opioid addiction. Rather it is most efficient when utilized in a complete treatment schedule with social support and therapy.

What are The Benefits of Vivitrol Injection?

Vivitrol is different from other prescriptions designed for this purpose (such as buprenorphine and methadone which provide the effects of opioids in a controlled manner thus preventing impairment and intoxication). While medications like methadone can be useful as well, they can also be misused to feel a more intense high. This raises the risk of addiction. Patients can become more physically dependent on these medications and even experience withdrawal when they stop taking them.

However, with Vivitrol, there isn’t any euphoria. Thus no potential for addiction or substance abuse. Since it doesn’t produce physical dependence, there isn’t any known withdrawal syndrome. Because it is administered once in 4 weeks, it offers a full month treatment without the patient having to continue taking it. This makes it easier to remain sober after treatment.

What Are The Side Effects of Vivitrol Injection?

Vivitrol use has been associated with the following side effects:

    Vomiting Nausea. Diarrhea. Loss of appetite. Fatigue and sleeping issues. Dry mouth. Anxiety. Muscle cramps. Pain and joint stiffness. Feeling weak.

Vivitrol shot can also result in issues at the site of injection like:

    Swelling. Pain. Blisters. Bumps. Scabs and wounds.

In rare cases, Vivitrol can lead to the following:

    Liver damage or hepatitis (if massive amounts of naltrexone is consumed). Severe pneumonia due to an allergy. Precipitated withdrawal. Risk of overdose if the patient relapses.

Note that patients who have used Vivitrol will be more susceptible to opioids and overdose if they relapse to drug use after ending Vivitrol administration.


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