What is Vivitrol?

Vivitrol, naltrexone for extended-release injectable suspension, is a prescription injectable medicine that used in the treatment of alcoholism and Opioid addiction. It is used to treat alcohol dependence after the alcoholic has stopped drinking. Vivitrol is also used to prevent relapse to opioid dependence after opioid detox when the addict has completely stopped taking all opioid drugs.

Vivitrol and Counseling

Vivitrol is not used alone in the treatment of alcoholism and opioid addiction. To successfully overcome your addiction Vivtrol must be used with other alcohol or drug recovery programs such as counseling. Patients taking Vivitrol are not guaranteed success in this pharmaceutical treatment option, however with a secondary treatment program patients are given greater chance in obtaining life long sobriety.

Vivitrol Side Effects


Just as when taking other medications there are risks associated with the use of Vivitrol. Most commonly patients taking Vivitrol will experience nausea, tiredness, headache, dizziness, vomiting, decreased appetite, painful joints, and muscle cramps. Those taking Vivitrol for Opioid dependency may experience; cold symptoms, trouble sleeping, and toothache. Not all patient taking Vivitrol will experience side effects to the drug.

Some side effect to Vivitrol are more severe than others. Patients taking Vivitrol to overcome alcohol and opioid dependencies are at risk of serious side effects. It is not uncommon for patients to experience Depressed mood, Allergic pneumonia or Serious allergic reactions when taking this prescription medication. If any side effects do not go away it is important for the patient to contact their Doctor immediately.

Opioid Overdose

Patients taking vivitrol for opioid dependency should not begin taking opioid drugs for any reason. Taking your regular dose of opioid drugs while taking vivitrol can lead to accidental overdose, serious injury, coma, or death. Patients should not take large amounts of opioids or try to overcome the opioid-blocking effects of vivitrol. If you have trouble breathing; become very drowsy with slowed breathing; have slow, shallow breathing; feel faint, dizzy, confused; or have other unusual symptoms seek emergency help immediately.

Severe Injection Site Reactions

Some patients may experience severe injection site reactions, including tissue death after receiving an Vivitrol injection. Some patients will require surgery to repair the damage due to the reaction. If you experience any signs of injection site reaction you should contact your Doctor immediately.

Signs of injection site reaction include;

  • Intense pain
  • The area feels hard
  • Swelling
  • Lumps
  • Blisters
  • An open wound
  • A dark scab
Sudden Opioid Withdrawal

Patients must stop taking any opioids or opioid-containing medications, including buprenorphine or methadone, for at least 7 to 14 days before starting Vivitrol to prevent any sudden opioid withdrawal symptoms. Some patients may require opioid detoxification within a medical facility, this will be determined by your Doctor.

Liver Damage or Hepatitis

Liver damage or hepatitis may develop in patients receiving Vivitrol due to its main ingredient, Naltrexone. Contact your Doctor immediately if you experience; Stomach area pain lasting more than a few days; Yellowing of the whites of your eyes; Dark urine; Tiredness.


Vivitrol  Uses

Vivitrol is used in the treatment of alcoholism and Opioid addiction. When the patient has stopped drinking alcohol vivitol is then used to treat alcohol dependency. Vivitrol is also used to prevent relapse to opioid dependence after opioid detox when the addict has completely stopped taking all opioid drugs. Vivitrol should be used in combination with another drug or alcohol treatment program such as counseling.

You Should Not Take Vivitrol If;

If you are still drinking alcohol or using opioid drugs you should not take Vivitrol. If you are experiencing any symptoms of physical withdrawal due to dependence on opioid street drugs or opioid-containing medicines, or if you are experiencing any alcohol withdrawal symptoms. you should not take Vivitrol. If you are allergic to naltrexone or any of the ingredients in VIVITROL or the liquid used to mix VIVITROL do not take this medication.