Alcohol Treatment Medications

Medications can be effective adjuncts to treatment or stand-alone treatments to help individuals maintain abstinence or to drink moderately. They can be prescribed by your doctor, psychiatrist, or nurse practitioner. The most commonly used at this time include the following:

  • Disulfiram (brand name: Antabuse), taken daily by pill, deters drinking by inducing vomiting.
  • Naltrexone (brand names: ReVia, Vivitrol), taken daily by pill or via monthly injections, blocks the pleasure experienced from drinking, diminishing the desire to continue drinking.
  • Acamprosate (brand name: Campral), may reduce craving for alcohol.
  • Topiramate (brand name: Topamax), used to prevent seizures and migraines, used off-label, may help treat alcohol problems as well as depression in some individuals.
  • Baclofen (brand name: Lioresal), used to reduce muscle spasms, muscle stiffness, and pain associated with back conditions, used off-label may help alcohol-dependent individuals drink less or maintain abstinence from drinking.