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Can you drink alcohol on Vivitrol or will you get sick?

Can you drink alcohol on Vivitrol or will you get sick?

Medically reviewed by Melisa Puckey, BPharm Last updated on Apr 5, 2020.

Official Answer

by Drugs.com

It depends on whether you are taking Vivitrol for opioid or alcohol dependence.

If you are on Vivitrol for opioid dependence

  • Then you may be able to continue drinking in moderation, however this is something that you will need to discuss with a health care provider and an addiction support team

If you are on Vivitrol for alcohol dependence then it is a little more complicated.

  • It is important that you should only start Vivitrol after you have stopped drinking
  • For alcohol dependence, Vivitrol is registered by the FDA to be only used by people who have stopped drinking alcohol, and are able to not drink alcohol in an outpatient setting
  • On Drugs.com in the Vivitrol drug information, it states that if you are alcohol dependent and on Vivitrol, then you should NOT drink any alcohol 
  • Then are there other people who follow The Sinclair Method (TSM)  that believe that drinking small amounts of alcohol while on naltrexone can be the path away from alcohol addiction. So this is an important question you personally need to discuss with your health care provider and addiction support team.

If you drink alcohol while on Vivitrol will you get sick?

Vivitrol is used to reduce cravings in alcohol and drug dependence, as it blocks the feeling of pleasure that you get when you use drugs or drink alcohol.

  • If you drink alcohol while on Vivitrol it will not make you feel more sick. You should feel the same amount of sickness that you would normally have, drinking the same amount of alcohol. 
  • Your body will respond to the alcohol like it usually would with poor coordination, reduced response time, and slower thinking, all of which is dependent on how much alcohol you have drunk.
  • You should NOT use opioids while on Vivitrol. If you use heroin or other opioid drugs while on Vivitrol the effect will be blocked, and you will not get the effect you are expecting.  If you try a larger dose of heroin or opioid to try and get high, you have a larger risk of overdose and serious injury, coma, or death.

Bottom Line:

  • For alcohol dependence you should only start Vivitrol once you have actually stopped drinking alcohol
  • Usually people who have alcohol dependant are recommended to NOT to drink alcohol while on Vivitrol
  • Some health care providers with addiction support teams follow The Sinclair Method which allows small amounts of alcohol to be consumed.
References
  • https://www.drugs.com/pro/vivitrol.html
  • http://www.vivitrol.com/
  • https://www.aafp.org/afp/2000/0315/p1891.html
  • https://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?setid=cd11c435-b0f0-4bb9-ae78-60f101f3703f

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