Many people throughout the world struggle with alcohol and drug addiction. Various treatment techniques are available to such individuals, one of which is a medication called Vivitrol. According to Vivitrol statistics, this drug is most often used to treat patients who abuse alcohol. However, it is also sometimes prescribed for those who are addicted to heroin and certain other narcotics. The following are some Vivitrol statistics that may be helpful to individuals who wish to understand this medication and how it is used:
The generic form of Vivitrol is naltrexone, and it is given in the form of an intramuscular injection. Because patients are not allowed to inject themselves, they do not acquire the medication at a pharmacy. Rather, they must visit a treatment center and receive the injection from a health care practitioner.
Vivitrol works by blocking the opioid receptor sites in the brain, and therefore when alcohol is consumed, the person will not experience the pleasurable sensation to which he or she initially became addicted. This can help those addicted to alcohol to abstain from the substance without having to battle overwhelming cravings. This in turn lessens the person's risk of experiencing a relapse.
It is important for one to understand, however, that Vivitrol will not cure alcoholism or drug addiction. It is designed to be used merely as one part of a multilayered plan of care. However, some individuals are tempted to shun the other facets of their therapy once they begin using Vivitrol. This is always a mistake, as the drug cannot be prescribed indefinitely, and therefore one must work through the issues that resulted in his or her addiction.
Additionally, it is important for one to refrain from taking Vivitrol until he or she has been alcohol free for a minimum of 7 to 10 days. Vivitrol statistics indicate that the medication will have an adverse effect and complicate the patient's situation in multiple ways if taken while he or she is still under the influence of alcohol. Therefore, when seeking such treatment, it is essential for individuals to be honest with their health care practitioner concerning the last time they drank alcoholic beverages. All treatment centers require a blood test before one is allowed to begin Vivitrol therapy.
Vivitrol should not be used by those who are currently addicted to street drugs or prescription medications that contain narcotics. If one has a physical dependence on such drugs and proceeds to take Vivitrol, he or she will be immediately thrust into cold turkey withdrawal.
Vivitrol statistics indicate that the most common side effects of the drug are nausea, and itchiness around the injection site. However, a certain percentage of individuals also experience dizziness, headaches, muscle cramps, and lethargy. The latter is a significant problem for some patients, although the reason for this is not yet known.
When taken in large doses, the medication may cause liver problems in certain individuals. For this reason, anyone who has a history of liver disease should discuss the use of the drug with his or her doctor before participating in Vivitrol therapy. The medication may also impair one's thinking and decrease his or her reaction time. Therefore, individuals who must drive or complete tasks that require them to be alert may not be good candidates for Vivitrol. Such matters should be discussed with a qualified health care professional before beginning treatment.
According to Vivitrol statistics, when the medication is used appropriately and monitored by a licensed health care practitioner it can offer a substantial number of benefits to those struggling with alcohol or heroin addiction. However, it is imperative that one refrain from regarding the drug as a cure for addiction. Rather, those who are being treated with Vivitrol must realize the importance of participating in group meetings, receiving individual counseling, and adhering to each facet of their overall plan of care. This will increase their chances of success in overcoming their addiction and reclaiming their lives. For many people who struggle with substance abuse, Vivitrol is the light at the end of the tunnel. Therefore, those who are battling addiction should speak to their doctor about the possibility of participating in such therapy.