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Low Dose Naltrexone: Understanding LDN and Its Uses

Naltrexone is an opioid antagonist that is used to treat alcohol and opioid addiction. Naltrexone was first approved by the FDA in 1984 as a 50mg tablet. However, low-dose naltrexone (LDN) has been found to promote immune-modulation and health promotion.

LDN has been found to decrease the severity of symptoms in diseases including fibromyalgia, Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and complex regional pain syndrome. Low-dose naltrexone (LDN) appears to act as a novel anti-inflammatory agent in the central nervous system by modulating microglial cells. These effects may be limited to low doses of naltrexone and appear to be completely independent from its well-known function on opioid receptors.

LDN is an inexpensive and well-tolerated oral medicine. Naltrexone, at its typical strength, is often marketed under the brands ReVia and Vivitrol among other names. It’s a drug that’s used to treat alcohol or opioid use disorder and helps people recover from addiction by decreasing cravings and euphoric sensations.

Naltrexone is a non-opioid medication that has shown effectiveness in the treatment of other addictions as well. Off-label use of naltrexone may help with many different addictions. Naltrexone should not be used by opioid addicts before entering rehabilitation. It’s taken by mouth or via injection into a muscle. Effects begin after 30 minutes. A reduction in opioid cravings might take a few weeks to manifest itself.

Naltrexone was first made in 1965 and was approved for medical use in the United States in 1984. Naltrexone, as naltrexone/bupropion (brand name Contrave), is also used to treat obesity.

Naltrexone is available (as a 50 mg tablet) commercially. However, low-dose naltrexone therapy is most often given as 0.5mg to 4.5 mg per day, depending on the patient’s response, with adjustments made to the correct dose according to the prescription order from HB Pharmacy.

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