This work may not be copied, distributed, displayed, published, reproduced, transmitted, modified, posted, sold, licensed, or used for commercial purposes. By downloading this file, you are agreeing to the publisher’s Terms & Conditions.


New Therapeutic Options for Alcohol Dependence: Long-Acting Intramuscular Formulations of Naltrexone

James C. Garbutt, MD

Published: December 15, 2006

Article Abstract

Results of oral therapy for alcohol dependence have been inconsistent, in part because of poor medication adherence. A newly approved, extended-release intramuscular formulation of naltrexone (XR-NTX) may have advantages over oral formulations in terms of adherence. One randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial demonstrated that treatment with XR-NTX significantly decreased the number of heavy-drinking days compared with placebo treatment among patients who had a current DSM-IV diagnosis of alcohol dependence. Another trial, of a different investigational longacting intramuscular formulation of naltrexone (poly [DL-] lactide polymer; DL-NTX), found that time to first drinking day was significantly greater among alcohol-dependent (DSM-IV) subjects using DL-NTX than among those using placebo. Time to first drinking day and cumulative abstinent days were significantly greater among alcohol dependent (DSM-IV) subjects using DL-NTX than among those using placebo. However, the primary outcome measure, cumulative non-heavy drinking days, was not significantly different between the DL-NTX and the placebo groups. Treatment with long-acting intramuscular formulations of naltrexone is generally well tolerated. Nausea, headache, injection-site reactions, and fatigue are the most common adverse events.

Some JCP and PCC articles are available in PDF format only. Please click the PDF link at the top of this page to access the full text.

Related Articles

Volume: 67

Quick Links: