Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more


  • Comment

VOL: 101, ISSUE: 36, PAGE NO: 35

Generic and proprietary names


Generic and proprietary names
- Acamprosate calcium.



- Campral EC.



- Reduces the craving experienced by alcohol-dependent patients.



- It acts by stabilising the imbalance of neurotransmitters.



- Drugs used in substance dependence.



- A synthetic taurine analogue.



- Used to maintain abstinence in alcohol-dependent patients. The medication should be combined with counselling.



- Known sensitivity to this medication.



- Renal impairment.



- Severe hepatic impairment.



- Pregnancy.



- Breastfeeding.



- Not recommended for use in older people or children.



Common side-effects
- Diarrhoea.



- Abdominal pain.



- Paresthesias (pins and needles) in limbs.



- Pruritus (itching).



Rare side-effects
- Altered libido.



- Skin reactions.



- There is no interaction with alcohol and medication can be continued in the event of relapse. However, if regular abuse continues there is little point in taking the medication.



- Acamprosate does not directly affect withdrawal and should be initiated promptly afterwards in conjunction with counselling.



- Treatment should be continued for a period of one year and should be maintained if the patient relapses.



Nursing considerations
- There is no disulfiram-like action and no antidepressant effect. Therefore, this medication is not suitable for use as withdrawal treatment.



- Patients will need to be weighed as the appropriate dosage of this medication is dependent on body weight.



- Mental health problems such as depression that occur while taking this medication may be due to the drug or may be a feature of the underlying alcohol problems.



- Abrupt withdrawal is not associated with any adverse events after one year of treatment.



- Overdose is not a high risk and an unintentional extra dose is unlikely to be of concern. A large overdose may result in diarrhoea and appropriate medical action should be taken.



Patient teaching
- This medication should be taken with meals.



- Patients should be asked to speak to the prescribing health care professional before stopping taking the drug.



- The medication poses no special hazards with driving or operating heavy machinery.



- There is no evidence that acamprosate is addictive.



Nurses should refer to manufacturer’s summary of product characteristics and to appropriate local guidelines

  • Comment

Related files

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.