In 2004, the FDA approved Campral (acamprosate calcium), a delayed-release tablet for the maintenance of abstinence from alcohol in patients with alcohol dependence. The approval brought an important new medication to the aid of those committed to beating alcohol dependence.
Campral is different from other currently available medications. Campral is a medication that helps people stay alcohol-free in combination with counseling or support groups once they have stopped drinking. Campral is thought to restore the normal brain balance, which has been disturbed in someone who is alcohol dependent.
Other medications prescribed to help people stop drinking work differently from Campral. Campral helps reduce the physical distress and emotional discomfort (e.g. sweating, anxiety, sleep disturbances) associated with staying alcohol-free. This, in combination with counseling and support groups, makes it easier for people not to drink during the initial weeks following beginning abstinence.
In clinical studies and in real-world use, Campral has been proven to help maintain complete abstinence and reduce the number and severity of relapses for up to three times more alcohol-dependent patients then and inactive placebo medication.
When taken by persons motivated to stop drinking and to participate in treatment, Campral has demonstrated successes that counseling programs alone have not. Campral is safe and well-tolerated. Campral has been used by over to may in patients worldwide. It can be taken with many commonly prescribed medications for patients with other disorders such as depression or anxiety.