Acamprosate (By mouth)
Given as part of an alcohol withdrawal program. Helps decrease the desire to drink again.
There may be other brand names for this medicine.
When This Medicine Should Not Be Used
You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to acamprosate, or if you have severe kidney disease.
How to Use This Medicine
- Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
- It is best to take this medicine with food or milk.
- Swallow the extended-release tablet whole. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
- Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about counseling or any other measures to treat your condition.
If a dose is missed:
- If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine
- Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
- Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
- Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
- Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.
Warnings While Using This Medicine
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Tell your doctor if you plan to have children.
- This medicine may make you drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.
- Tell your doctor if you start drinking alcohol again while using this medicine This medicine will not prevent withdrawal symptoms if you start and stop drinking again.
- Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
- Your doctor will need to check your blood at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
- Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
- Chest pain, or fast heartbeat.
- Decrease in how much or how often you urinate.
- Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, and body aches..
- Lightheadedness or fainting.
- Rapid weight gain, swelling in your face, hands, ankles, or feet.
- Trouble breathing.
- Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness.
- Unusual behavior, or thoughts of hurting yourself.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
- Anxiety, depression, or memory problems.
- Change in your vision or taste.
- Headache, back pain, or dry mouth.
- Joint or muscle pain.
- Loss of interest in sex, or or problems with sex.
- Mild skin rash, redness, or itching.
- Mild nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, mild stomach pain, increase in appetite.
- Runny or stuffy nose.
- Trouble sleeping.
- Tremors or muscle cramps.
- Warmth or redness in your face, neck, chest, or arms.
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088
- Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013
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This page was last updated: June 18, 2013