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  • United Kingdom
Brand
  • Adepend
Strength
  • 50mg
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Adepend - naltrexone - 50mg - 28 Tablets Revia/​Adepend naltrexone Brand United Kingdom 50mg 28 Tablets DR $163.91 Add

Medicines have benefits and some have risks. Always read the label and use only as directed. If symptoms persist or you have side effects see your health professional. Brands and generics both contain the same active ingredient(s) and are medically equivalent. Some brands are marketed under different names by the same manufacturing country depending on the country of origin.

Adepend (naltrexone) is an interesting medication used to help patients overcome addiction, predominantly alcohol and opioid addiction, but it is sometimes used in other addiction scenarios. Though rare, Adepend does see some use in cancer treatments, behavioral issues, and other cases that don't involve addiction.

An opioid antagonist, Adepend helps end addiction by:

  • Reducing the pleasurable effects of alcohol and opioids;
  • Reducing the craving for alcohol.

Though an effective medication, Adepend is unlikely to cure addiction if the patient doesn't want to be cured. Even if the patient does desire to be addiction-free, counseling, support networks, behavior modification and so forth are extremely beneficial and strongly recommended along with this medication.

What to Expect from Treatment

Adepend reduces the pleasurable effects from both alcohol and opioids, and helps curb alcohol cravings. Unfortunately it does not help curb opioid cravings, but a patient taking Adepend who has a relapse and takes opioids will derive no pleasure from them.

A big concern with opioid addiction treatment is severity of withdrawal effects. Patients who have used opioids for a long time, or a large volume for a short time, are best treated in a medical setting where they can be monitored.

If treating opioid addiction at home:

  • Treatment will ideally start after the patient has been opioid-free for 7 to 10 days.
  • Start with 25 mg once per day (tablets can be split if needed) to ensure no severe side effects develop.
  • If no severe side effects are present, dosage should be increased to 50 mg per day, taken once per day.
  • Treatment typically continues for 3 to 6 months, but can span years if needed.

In general Adepend is more effective in treating alcohol addiction, as it does help reduce cravings. There's no need to worry about the patient quitting alcohol before starting treatment, and all patients take 50 mg once per day.

There are two general approaches to ending alcohol dependency with Adepend:

  • Start taking Adepend before actively trying to quit; this method utilizes the reduced reward effect, making the patient gradually lose interest in drinking since there is little reward from it.
  • Quit drinking entirely when treatment starts, relying on Adepend to minimize any cravings.
  • For both methods 50 mg is taken once per day, for a minimum of 12 weeks.

Studies indicate both methods work well, and it's largely a matter of personal preference which is chosen.

Again for both alcohol and opioids success is much greater when patients have access to a strong support network---be that medical staff or friends and family---and undergo counseling, behavior modifications, or similar techniques.

Off-Label Uses

Adepend is increasingly used for various off-label purposes, with varying degrees of success, including:

  • Fibromyalgia
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Certain Cancers
  • Certain autistic behaviors
  • Depersonalization disorder
  • Impulse control disorders
  • Smoking cessation

There is relatively little documentation regarding the effectiveness of the treatment in off-label uses, so there are no widely-accepted dosage & administration guidelines. Patients are advised to do their own research and seek out a doctor familiar with using Adepend for a given condition.

On the plus side, off-label uses typically involve low doses (under 50 mg per day) and are very unlikely to cause significant side effects.

Concerns & Considerations

Ideally all patients--particularly those with a history of alcohol abuse--will have a liver function test before starting treatment with this medication.

Severe cramps, vomiting, mental changes, hallucinations, and other alarming symptoms may be evidence of opioid withdrawal, particularly if they occur shortly after administration. Seek medical attention if these symptoms develop.

Be aware that Adepend blocks the effects of all opioids, including those used for legitimate medical purposes. Care providers should be made aware that Adepend is being taken, particularly before any medical procedures or in the event of injury.

When used properly (50 mg or less per day) Adepend is unlikely to produce any side effects other than mild gastrointestinal upset, including indigestion, nausea and diarrhea. A few patients also experience mild headaches, dizziness and difficulty sleeping.

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