If you or your loved one is considering treatment options for an opioid-free recovery journey, it may be time to discuss VIVITROL with a healthcare provider.


  • Opioid blocker
  • Must be administered by a healthcare provider
  • Once-monthly injection
  • Used with counseling
  • Non-addictive and not a narcotic
  • Requires opioid detox of 7–14 days prior to start of treatment

Anyone who receives a VIVITROL injection must not use any type of opioid (must be opioid-free) including street drugs, prescription pain medicines, cough, cold, or diarrhea medicines that contain opioids, or opioid dependence treatments, buprenorphine or methadone, for at least 7 to 14 days before starting VIVITROL. Using opioids in the 7 to 14 days before you start receiving VIVITROL may cause you to suddenly have symptoms of opioid withdrawal when you get the VIVITROL injection.

Sudden opioid withdrawal can be severe, and you may need to go to the hospital.

You must be opioid-free before receiving VIVITROL, unless your healthcare provider decides that you don’t need to go through detox first. Instead, your doctor may decide to give your VIVITROL injection in a medical facility that can treat you for sudden opioid withdrawal.

  • VIVITROL is injected by a healthcare provider, about 1 time each month.
  • VIVITROL must be injected by a healthcare provider. Do not attempt to inject yourself with VIVITROL. Serious reaction, some that may require hospitalization, might happen.
  • VIVITROL is given as an injection into a muscle in your buttocks using a special needle that comes with VIVITROL.

See Med Guide for more information.


When used as part of a treatment plan that includes counseling, VIVITROL prevents relapse to opioid dependence after opioid detox.


More patients achieved complete abstinence with VIVITROL and counseling than with placebo1,2

This data is from a 6-month, double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical study of 124 opioid-dependent patients treated with placebo and counseling who were compared to 126 opioid-dependent patients treated with VIVITROL and counseling, following opioid detoxification.1,2 Complete abstinence was defined as a negative urine test for opioids and no self-reported use for all weekly visits. During Weeks 5-24 of the study. Data were not collected during Weeks 1-4 of the trial to allow for stabilization of abstinence.

  • 45 out of 126 patients treated with VIVITROL had complete abstinence compared to 28 out of 124 patients treated with placebo from weeks 5-24
  • 1 patient on VIVITROL discontinued due to relapse compared to 17 patients on placebo

Patients were less likely to relapse to dependence2

  • A greater percentage of subjects in the VIVITROL group remained in the study compared to the placebo group

Patients and opioid cravings

  • Craving, described as a "need for opioids" and measured on a scale from 0-100 (with 0 being "none" and 100 being "very much so"), was reported every week
  • Patients treated with VIVITROL experienced an average decrease in craving score of 10.1 from 18.2
  • Patients treated with placebo experienced an average increase in craving score of 0.7 from 21.8

Is there a risk of opioid overdose with VIVITROL?3

Yes. One serious side effect of VIVITROL is the risk of opioid overdose. Using opioids, even in amounts that you used before VIVITROL treatment, can lead to accidental overdose, serious injury, coma, or death.

  • Do not take large amounts of opioids to try to overcome the opioid-blocking effects of VIVITROL.
  • Do not use opioids in amounts that you used before VIVITROL treatment. You may even be more sensitive to lower amounts of opioids:
  • After detox
  • When your next VIVITROL dose is due
  • If you miss a dose of VIVITROL
  • After you stop VIVITROL treatment

Get emergency medical help right away if you:

  • have trouble breathing
  • become very drowsy with slowed breathing
  • have slow, shallow breathing (little chest movement with breathing)
  • feel faint, very dizzy, confused, or have other unusual symptoms.

It is important that you tell your family and the people closest to you of this increased sensitivity to opioids and the risk of overdose.

Is there a risk of severe reactions at the injection site with VIVITROL?3

Yes. One serious side effect of VIVITROL is severe reactions at the site of the injection, including tissue death. Some injection site reactions have required surgery. VIVITROL must be injected by a healthcare provider. Call your healthcare provider right away if you notice any of the following at your injection site:

  • Intense pain
  • The area feels hard
  • Large area of swelling
  • Lumps
  • Blisters
  • An open wound
  • A dark scab

Tell your healthcare provider about any injection site reaction that concerns you, gets worse over time, or does not get better by two weeks after the injection.

Is there a risk of sudden opioid withdrawal when starting VIVITROL?3

Yes. One serious side effect of VIVITROL is sudden opioid withdrawal. You must stop taking any opioids or opioid-containing medications, including buprenorphine or methadone, for at least 7 to 14 days before starting VIVITROL. If your healthcare provider decides that you don’t need to complete detox first, he or she may give you VIVITROL in a medical facility that can treat sudden opioid withdrawal. Sudden opioid withdrawal can be severe and may require hospitalization.

VIVITROL is not right for everyone. There are significant risks from VIVITROL treatment, including risk of opioid overdose, severe reaction at the injection site and sudden opioid withdrawal.
See Important Safety Information below. Discuss all benefits and risks with a healthcare provider. See Prescribing Information and Medication Guide.


  1. VIVITROL [prescribing information]. Waltham, MA: Alkermes, Inc; rev March 2021.
  2. Krupitsky E, Nunes EV, Ling W, Illeperuma A, Gastfriend DR, Silverman BL. Injectable extended-release naltrexone for opioid dependence: a double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicentre randomised trial. Lancet. 2011;377(9776):1506-1513.
  3. VIVITROL [medication guide]. Waltham, MA: Alkermes, Inc; rev May 2020.

*Terms and Conditions

Eligibility for Alkermes-Sponsored Co-pay Savings. This offer is only available to patients 18 years or older, with a prescription consistent with the Prescribing Information and the patient is not enrolled in, or covered by, any local, state, federal or other government program that pays for any portion of medication costs, including but not limited to Medicare, including Medicare Part D or Medicare Advantage plans; Medicaid, including Medicaid Managed Care and Alternative Benefit Plans under the Affordable Care Act; Medigap; VA; DOD; TRICARE; or a residential correctional program.
Additional Terms of Use: This offer is not conditioned on any past, present, or future purchase, including refills. Alkermes reserves the right to rescind, revoke, or amend this offer, program eligibility, and requirements at any time without notice. This offer is limited to one per patient, may not be used with any other offer, is not transferable and may not be sold, purchased or traded, or offered for sale, purchase or trade. Void where prohibited by law. Program Administrator or its designee will have the right upon reasonable prior written notice, during normal business hours, and subject to applicable law, to audit compliance with this program.