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Generic Name: Disulfiram

Brand Names: Antabuse

Dosage Package: 500 mg, 250 mg

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What is Antabuse?

Antabuse is able to reduce an alcohol consumption and completely cure of an alcoholism. It has Disulfiram ingredient that shows specific action on the body and causes a rejection of ethanol.

The treatment of the chronic alcoholism with Antabuse is based on the sensibilization. A stable intolerability of ethanol is produced after the use of a dose of the drug. Antabuse does not influence on a desire to drink. It does not interact with the central nervous system or pleasure centers. The drug acts in the gastro-intestinal tract and affects biochemical processes happening in the body after alcohol consumption.

In other words, Disulfiram breaks metabolism of ethanol, and as a result, it turns into a toxicant which causes a lot of side effects such as nausea, vomiting, high blood pressure, tachycardia, shortness of breath, redness of face, and others.

This way, a human develops a rejection to alcohol after 1-2 attacks, and so alcohol consumption is reduced.

Who should take Antabuse?

Antabuse is prescribed in the treatment of the chronic alcoholism in patients when drug-free methods do not help. Nowadays it is one of the most effective drug, even though it is a harsh method.

How to take Antabuse?

Antabuse may be used only if a human completely stopped drinking alcohol 3-5 days before the beginning of the treatment. If there is a little of ethanol in the blood, a severe reaction may happen after the use of the first dose of the drug.

It will be better if the first day of the treatment is controlled by a physician. At first, a patient is given a half of the pill of Antabuse, and his/her body reaction is observed within 3-4 hours. If there is no reaction, the second half of the pill is given. Then a patient may go home.

In 7-10 days after the first use of Antabuse, a physician gives a patient 500 mg of the drug, and then 20-30 ml of vodka. If a reaction did not happen within 1-2 hours, a dose of alcohol is increased. It is necessary to achieve that level of ethanol when a patient has a side effect.

After the production of a stable conditional rejection of alcohol, it is necessary to continue the maintaining therapy within 1-3 years. During the maintaining therapy, it is enough to take Antabuse 150-200 mg per day.

What are side effects?

The use of Antabuse may be accompanied by some side effects:  metallic taste in the mouth, skin rash, confusion, headache, dry mouth, digestion disorder, and bad breath.

The side effects may be very dangerous if Disulfiram interacts with alcohol. Go to a doctor right away in this case.


Special recommendations

  • Taking Antabuse, you do not have to take even little of alcohol. Moreover, do not take medicines or products containing ethyl.
  • There are many contraindications, when the use of the drug is prohibited: severe cardiovascular diseases cochlear neuritis, or optic neuritis, glaucoma, tuberculosis, hepatic failure, pancreatic diabetes, bronchial asthma, acute gastric ulcer. If you have one of these disorders, you may be contraindicated to take Antabuse
  • Antabuse is not prescribed patients under 18 years old and over 60 years old.


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