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Vivitrol Treatment for Opioid and Alcohol Dependence in West Palm Beach

Opioid and alcohol dependence are difficult conditions to overcome due to the long-lasting cravings they produce–even weeks or months into recovery. Although there are many medications available to treat these conditions, many of them are habit-forming, physically addictive, or come with a long list of side effects. Vivitrol is the first non-narcotic, non-addictive, extended-release medication that has been approved to treat both opioid and alcohol use disorders.

Vivitrol treatment in West Palm Beach combines behavioral therapy, counseling, and peer support with pharmacological management. This approach can help reduce the risk for relapse by easing drug and alcohol cravings as well as working to normalize brain chemistry.

What is Vivitrol (Naltrexone)?


Vivitrol is a brand-name medication containing naltrexone, an opioid receptor antagonist that blocks the effects of opioid drugs. The medication comes in the form of an intramuscular injection of extended-release naltrexone. Naltrexone is the only medication approved to treat opioid and alcohol use disorders that is not considered addictive or a controlled substance.

The Vivitrol shot is administered in the buttocks once each month by a certified medical professional. The most common side effects are injection site reactions such as redness, irritation, or rash at the injection site. These symptoms usually subside within a couple of days and do not cause any complications.[1]

Many addiction treatment centers in West Palm Beach utilize Vivitrol for the treatment of opioid and alcohol use disorders. The medication has been proven to reduce the risk for relapse and improve treatment outcomes in participating patients.

Vivitrol for Opioid Use Disorder

Vivitrol was originally approved in 2006 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of alcohol use disorder, however, in 2010, it was also approved to treat opioid use disorder. Naltrexone works by binding to opioid receptors in the brain for one month at a time, both blocking the effects of opioids and reducing drug cravings.

Patients who are addicted to opioids must remain clean from opioids for at least 7 to 10 days before taking Vivitrol. After detoxing completely, patients may receive their first injection. As an opioid receptor antagonist, naltrexone binds to opioid receptors, blocks them, and prevents the euphoric effects of opioid drugs. In other words, if a person takes an opioid while on Vivitrol, they will not get high. Vivitrol is also known to reduce opioid cravings.

Researchers have found that 36% of people who took Vivitrol didn’t use any opioids during a 24-week study. By contrast, a mere 23% of people who took a placebo didn’t use opioids. Vivitrol may improve treatment outcomes and reduce the risk of opioid relapse.[2]

Vivitrol for Alcohol Use Disorder

The exact mechanism of action behind Vivitrol treating alcohol use disorder is unknown. However, researchers believe naltrexone works to stabilize brain chemistry and change the way the brain thinks about alcohol in a reward-based way. As a result, Vivitrol is used to reduce alcohol cravings and prevent relapse.

In a clinical trial, researchers found that patients who took Vivitrol had 25% fewer drinking days than patients who received a placebo.[3]

How Vivitrol Treatment Works

What is Vivitrol Treatment in West Palm Beach Like?

Before monthly Vivitrol shots can be given, patients must first detox completely from opioids and/or alcohol. Once cleared for treatment to begin, patients have monthly appointments when they must present for their injection. The injection is given by a physician in the buttocks.

Because Vivitrol may cause side effects, some patients may be given once-daily ReVia (naltrexone) tablets before starting Vivitrol. This way patients can see how their bodies respond to naltrexone and decide whether or not Vivitrol is right for them. Patients taking Vivitrol will also have weekly doctor’s visits to discuss any side effects, questions, and health concerns.

Vivitrol is most effective when combined with a comprehensive substance abuse treatment program involving behavioral therapy and counseling.

At Mandala Healing Center in West Palm Beach, therapies are tailored to meet each patient’s individual needs. Patients learn coping skills that are helpful for sobriety and about the recovery-related resources that are available to them. Since Vivitrol takes care of drug and alcohol cravings, the medication allows patients to focus all of their energy on their treatment plan.

Start Treatment With Vivitrol in West Palm Beach Today

Here at Mandala Healing Center, we want nothing more than to see our patients heal from addiction and turn their lives around. We employ the latest treatment methods and all possible tools to help each individual achieve this goal. Our holistic approach treats the mind, body, and spirit using counseling, therapeutic communities, mindfulness exercises, and medications like Vivitrol.

If you or a loved one are addicted to alcohol and opioids, treatment with Vivitrol may be right for you. Call now to speak with a West Palm Beach addiction specialist about starting Vivitrol treatment today.