Campral®, Acamprosate

Brand name

  • Campral®

Drug Class

  • GABA Agonist
  • Glutamate antagonist

Preparations

  • Tablet: 333 mg

Indications

  • Treatment of alcohol dependence
  • Reduces craving for alcohol

Pharmacology

Acamprosate is believed to block GABA (glutaminergic N-methyl-Daspartate) receptors and activate 3-aminobutyric acid type A receptors.

Dosing

  • Start 3 to 7 days after the patient’s last drink
  • 333-mg enteric coated tablets
  • Adults ≥ 132 lbs (60 kg): two tablets three times per day for 3 to 6 months
  • Adults < 132 lbs: 2 tabs am, i-tab noon, i-tab hs

Drug Interactions

  • There are no interactions with concomitant use of alcohol, diazepam (Valium), disulfiram, or imipramine (Tofranil), so patients with alcohol dependence can continue to use acamprosate during a relapse.
  • Tetracyclines may be rendered inactive

Adverse Effects

  • Lightheaded
  • Sleepy
  • Headache
  • Blurred eyesight
  • Change in thinking clearly
  • Belly pain
  • Stomach upset
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Nervousness
  • Flatulence
  • Dyspepsia
  • Altered libido
  • Parasthesiae
  • Rash or isolated pruritus
  • Abdominal pain

Contraindications

  • Severe renal impairment (creatinine clearance < 30 mL per minute [0.5 mL per second])
  • Hypersensitivity to the drug
  • Severe hepatic failure
  • FDA pregnancy category C (adverse effects on the fetus in animal studies but no human trials)

Section

This document is prepared by the “Mental Health for All” team. This document is provided for information purposes only and does not necessarily represent endorsement by or an official position of the Essentials of Medicine. Advice on the treatment or care of an individual patient should be obtained through consultation with a physician who has examined that patient or is familiar with that patient’s medical history.

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