Tuesday September 27th 2016

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Does Campral get you high?

No, you cannot get high on Campral (acamprosate). Additionally, this medication has no addictive properties and DOES NOT lead to tolerance or dependence.

Explore the use and benefits of Campral for alcohol dependence treatment here. We also explore its mechanism of action and inform you of its possible adverse effects. If you have any questions after reading the article, you can to post them in the comments section at the end of the page. We’ll try to provide a personal and prompt response to all legitimate inquiries.

Campral use and chemical composition

Campral is successfully used in the treatment of alcoholism, although scientists still do not completely understand how it works in the brain. Clinical trials suggest that Campral blocks the glutaminergic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors, while activating gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors. It blocks alcohol cravings and lowers interest in drinking, even in chronic alcoholics. Campral is also believed to address protracted withdrawal symptoms, or PAWS, in long term drinkers.

In sum, this medication can help alcohol-dependent people achieve and maintain their sobriety. Campral stays in the system and requires regular three-time a day dosing in order to help maintain high enough levels of acamprosate for therapeutic effect. Campral is especially helpful when used in combination with support groups, psychological counseling, community therapy sessions or treatment programs, and in people with a high motivation to stop problem drinking.

What’s in Campral?

Each Campral tablet contains 333mg of acamprosate calcium, which is equivalent to 300mg of acamprosate. Acamprosate is thought to stabilize the chemical balance in the brain that would otherwise be disrupted by alcoholism.Campral tablets also contain inactive ingredients, including: crospovidone, microcrystalline cellulose, magnesium silicate, sodium starch glycolate, colloidal anhydrous silica, magnesium stearate, talc, propylene glycol, and sulfites residue.

Risks of Campral addiction and abuse

Campral contains acamprosate calcium as an active ingredient. This is a substance that does not have any properties for abuse or addiction, nor does it have a potential to cause physical or psychological dependence. Campral is also not a FDA controlled substance in the U.S. and carries little overdose risk.

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How does Campral work in the brain?

Campral works by reducing alcohol cravings, but unlike other medications used in the treatment of chronic alcoholism, Campral doesn’t cause sickness if alcohol is ingested. People who drink alcohol often and over a long span of time suffer from chemical imbalance and Campral appears to normalize the brain activity by restoring the chemical balance.

Note that Campral is not a pill that can magically heal alcoholism It does not help people quit drinking and does not treat alcohol withdrawal symptoms during detox. In fact, it is most efficient in patients who have already gone through withdrawal. Additionally, Campral can trigger more or less serious side effects. Acamprosate should not be taken by people with kidney problems or allergies to the drug.

Campral addiction liability

Campral carries no addiction liability. Instead, Campral is a drinking deterrent that is indicated for the maintenance of sobriety in people who are seeking recovery from alcoholism and who are abstinent at treatment initiation.

Mixing Campral with other substances

Different clinical studies have not found any specific interactions between alcohol and Campral. It doesn’t cause sickness or adverse effects if alcohol is ingested, and patients can continue their therapy even if they relapse.

Further, Campral does not affect the action of most administered medications, including: disulfiram, desipramine, diazepam, imipramine, naltexol, naltrexone, nordiazepam, and SSRI’s (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors). Plus, during Campral treatment, no dose adjustment is needed for any of the listed medications.

Note that Campral undergoes renal elimination exclusively. It’s not recommended for use in individuals diagnosed with serious kidney damaged and should be used with caution in people with kidney problems. Furthermore, medications such as aminoglycoside antibiotics (gentamycin and amikacin), that may be toxic to the kidneys, should also be avoided. Patients need to inform their medical clinician of all medications they use, so any possible interactions can be avoided.

Negative side effects of Campral

Although uncommon, adverse effects from Campral can occur and can be quite serious. If you experience any of these side-effects you should get medical help and inform your prescribing doctor, pharmacist, psychiatrist, or substance abuse treatment counselor. Side effects from Campral include:

  • anxiety
  • abnormal dreams
  • allergic reactions (hives, swellings, difficult respiration)
  • depression
  • diarrhea
  • hallucinations
  • insomnia
  • irregular or pounding heartbeat
  • loss of appetite
  • mood changes
  • nausea
  • self-harming and intentional injury
  • suicidal ideation
  • suicide attempt

Questions about Campral

Alcoholism is a difficult problem and problem drinking is a habit that is hard to kick. But you don’t have to do it alone and you can always ask for help.

We are here to provide any information that you may need regarding addiction treatment. If you are trying to stop alcohol use or you have a loved one who’s struggling, maybe Campral is a medication that can help. We welcome your questions and comments in the section below. We try our best to provide answers or refer you to experts that can.

Reference Sources: PubChem: Acamprosate
DASSA: Acamprosate (Campal): Patient-client information
DailyMed: Campral (acamprosate calcium) tablet
NIH: Answers to Frequnetly Asked Medication Questions: Acamprosate
PBM Veterans Affairs: Acamprosate (Campral)
SAMHSA: Acamprosate: A new medication for alcohol use disorders
NIH: Treatment of Alcohol Dependence With Medications

Photo credit: geralt

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