disulfiram, Antabuse (cont.)
Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.
PREPARATIONS: Tablets: 250 and 500 mg
Disulfiram may increase blood levels of phenytoin (Dilantin), leading to high blood levels of phenytoin. Blood levels of phenytoin should be monitored and the dose of phenytoin should be adjusted as needed.
STORAGE: Disulfuram should be storec at room temperature, 20 C to 25 C (68 F to 77 F).
DOSING: Disulfiram should not be started unless a patient has stopped ingesting alcohol for at least 12 hours.
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Disulfiram is an oral drug used for treating alcoholism. Alcohol is converted in the body into acetaldehyde by an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase. Another enzyme called acetaldehyde dehydrogenase then converts acetaldehyde into acetic acid. Disulfiram prevents acetaldehyde dehydrogenase from converting acetaldehyde into acetic acid, leading to a buildup of acetaldehyde levels in the blood.
High acetaldehyde levels cause unpleasant symptoms after drinking alcohol such as:
These unpleasant side effects dissuade alcoholics from drinking. The FDA approved disulfiram in August, 1951.
Medically reviewed by Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
Reference: FDA Prescribing Information
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 1/19/2016
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