Fast Five Quiz: Alcoholism (Alcohol Use Disorder)

Steve Soreff, MD


January 24, 2023

Current APA guidelines recommend that providers offer naltrexone or acamprosate to patients with moderate to severe AUD who do not have contraindications, prefer pharmacotherapy, or have not responded to nonpharmacologic treatments alone and want to become abstinent or reduce alcohol consumption.

The APA suggests that topiramate or gabapentin be offered to patients with moderate to severe AUD who have not responded to or are intolerant to naltrexone and acamprosate or who prefer topiramate or gabapentin. The APA does not recommend the use of antidepressant medications, such as sertraline or paroxetine, unless a co-occurring disorder is present for which an antidepressant is indicated. The APA also recommends against the use of benzodiazepines, such as alprazolam and diazepam, unless treating acute alcohol withdrawal or a co-occurring disorder for which a benzodiazepine is indicated.

Clinicians need be aware of several things in the treatment of persons with AUD: Alcoholics Anonymous is an effective program for many patients, it is best to consider patients with AUD may have other psychiatric disorders, and for most people with AUD, it is a lifelong disorder.

Learn more about naltrexone.

This Fast Five Quiz was excerpted and adapted from the Medscape articles Alcoholism, Alcohol and Substance Abuse Evaluation, and Naltrexone.

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