SILVER SPRING, Md. The Food and Drug Administration approved a drug to treat and prevent relapse after patients with opioid dependence have undergone detoxification treatment.
Vivitrol is an extended-release formulation of naltrexone -- which works to block opioid receptors in the brain -- administered by intramuscular injection once a month. It only is administered by a physician.
"Addiction is a serious problem in this country, and can have devastating effects on individuals who are drug-dependent, and on their family members and society," said Janet Woodcock, director of FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. "This drug approval represents a significant advancement in addiction treatment."