Pharmacological interventions for alcohol relapse prevention

  • A Chithiramohan
  • S George
Keywords: Alcohol, Dependence, Pharmacological treatment


Alcohol dependence is a chronic, debilitating disorder that is an important public health problem worldwide. Combined psychological and pharmacological treatment packages produce best outcomes in its management. In this paper we discuss the three NICE – approved relapse prevention medications used in treatment of alcohol dependence: acamprosate, naltrexone and disulfiram. We review the pharmacological profile, mode of action, pharmacokinetics, and safety and tolerability of each of these pharmacological interventions. We discuss how each intervention can be used in clinical practice and review the efficacy of each drug. No one drug is clearly superior to the other, and clinical factors and patient choice should inform the choice of drug.

KEY WORDS: Alcohol; Dependence; Pharmacological treatment


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1694-0423