Vivitrol (naltrexone) blocks the effects of opioid medication, including pain relief or feelings of well-being that can lead to opioid abuse. An opioid is sometimes called a narcotic. Vivitrol is used as part of a treatment program for drug or alcohol dependence.
Vivitrol injection is used to prevent relapse in people who became dependent on opioid medicine and then stopped using it. Naltrexone can help keep you from feeling a “need” to use the opioid.
Vivitrol injection is also used to treat alcoholism by reducing your urge to drink alcohol. This may help you drink less or stop drinking altogether. Naltrexone will not decrease the effects of alcohol you recently consumed. You should not be drinking at the time you receive your first Vivitrol injection.
Naltrexone is not a cure for drug addiction or alcoholism.
You should not receive Vivitrol if you are having drug or alcohol withdrawal symptoms, if you have taken any opioid medicine within the past 2 weeks, or if you are still actively drinking alcohol.
Call your doctor at once if you have signs of liver problems – nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, tired feeling, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, or jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).
Vivitrol can cause liver damage, especially at high doses. You should not receive Vivitrol injection if you have hepatitis or symptoms of liver failure.
Before receiving Vivitrol
You should not receive a Vivitrol injection if you still use opioid medicine, or you could have sudden and severe withdrawal symptoms.
You should not receive Vivitrol if you are allergic to naltrexone, or if:
you are having withdrawal symptoms from drug or alcohol addiction;
you have used any opioid medicine within the past 10 days (including fentanyl, Vicodin, OxyContin, and many others); or
you have used methadone or buprenorphine (Subutex, Butrans, Suboxone, Zubsolv) in the past 14 days.
To make sure Vivitrol is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:
kidney disease; or
a bleeding or blood-clotting disorder such as hemophilia.
It is not known whether Vivitrol will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
Naltrexone can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.