Plasma naltrexone during opioid detoxification

Tim McDonald, Rich Berkowitz, William E. Hoffman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Scopus citations


Orogastric naltrexone is used for opioid detoxification, but it is not known how gastric absorption affects plasma concentrations of the drug. We measured plasma naltrexone during orogastric naltrexone, given in repeated doses of 12.5 mg, 25 mg, 50 mg and 50 mg. Plasma naltrexone was measured after each naltrexone dose. The increase in plasma naltrexone was highly variable between patients during orogastric administration. Adequate detoxification was questioned in 4 of 10 patients because plasma naltrexone did not increase above 5 ng/ml. There was a negative correlation between plasma naltrexone and the presence of withdrawal symptoms on the day after the procedure (r = −0.78, P < 0.05). These results show that the increase in plasma naltrexone is variable during orogastric administration and this may impair successful detoxification.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59-64
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Addictive Diseases
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 10 2000


  • Antagonist
  • Detoxification
  • Naltrexone
  • Opiate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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