What to Know About Contrave (Naltrexone-Bupropion) – Health Fitness, Diets, Weight Loss

What to Know About Contrave (Naltrexone-Bupropion)

If you could drop some pounds and also you’re searching for a prescription weight reduction remedy, you might have a number of decisions. Your physician could speak to you about quite a lot of medicines, together with Contrave (bupropion and naltrexone). As a weight reduction remedy, Contrave is prescribed in pill type and most frequently alongside a reduced-calorie eating regimen and elevated bodily exercise with the intention to obtain outcomes.

Earlier than taking any weight reduction remedy or making modifications to your eating regimen, train plan, or life-style, ensure to seek the advice of with a medical skilled who can assess your wants and develop the most effective plan for you. This is what you could learn about Contrave, together with prices, weight reduction outcomes, and unintended effects.

What Is Contrave?

Contrave is a mixture of two completely different medicines: naltrexone hydrochloride and bupropion hydrochloride. Every extended-release pill incorporates:

  • 8 milligrams of naltrexone, an opioid agonist that’s typically prescribed for alcohol dependence, opioid dependence, or smoking cessation
  • 90 milligrams of bupropion, an aminoketone antidepressant that’s used to deal with despair and seasonal affective dysfunction

The mixture of the 2 medicines is prescribed to enhance weight reduction success. The drug impacts your central nervous system to extend the variety of energy you burn and scale back your urge for food.

Makes use of

The Meals and Drug Administration first authorized Contrave to assist in persistent weight administration in adults in 2014. Particularly, it’s prescribed as a weight reduction remedy to adults who’ve a physique mass index (BMI) of 30 or extra or a BMI of 27 or larger together with a weight-related situation similar to sort 2 diabetes, hypertension, or excessive ldl cholesterol. Your physician could prescribe Contrave in case you meet the above necessities and if earlier weight reduction therapies haven’t been profitable.


Analysis reveals that Contrave may also help to advertise weight reduction, however the numbers aren’t staggering. In a 2016 examine of sufferers with out diabetes, 42% of sufferers misplaced at the least 5% of their physique weight after a yr. That signifies that most examine contributors taking Contrave didn’t hit the 5% weight reduction purpose.

In a randomized scientific trial, 57% of sufferers who took Contrave misplaced at the least 5% of their physique weight. Nevertheless, solely 53% of the examine contributors accomplished this system. The remaining contributors dropped out earlier than the analysis was accomplished. Most dropped out inside the first few weeks, citing opposed reactions similar to nausea, constipation, and complications.

In sufferers with diabetes, the numbers are modest as effectively: 36% misplaced at the least 5% of their physique weight after a yr. In each research (contributors with and with out diabetes), the group taking the placebo misplaced considerably much less weight than the sufferers taking Contrave. All sufferers in each teams obtained life-style modification counseling that consisted of a low-calorie eating regimen and common train.

In every examine, contributors taking Contrave additionally made modifications to their eating regimen and train program. So though they did lose some weight with the eating regimen capsule (on common, about 12 kilos in a few yr), a few of that weight reduction was probably resulting from life-style modifications (eating regimen and train) and never the remedy. The quantity of weight you lose could have an incredible deal to do with how effectively you keep a calorie-controlled eating regimen and an train program. 

Earlier than Taking

Converse with a medical skilled in case you assume Contrave is an effective match for you. Your doctor can suggest the most effective plan of action and assist decide if this weight reduction drug might give you the results you want.

Precautions and Contraindications

In line with the FDA, Contrave shouldn’t be a really useful type of therapy for seizures, or individuals with a historical past of seizures, consuming issues similar to bulimia or anorexia nervosa, or uncontrolled hypertension (hypertension). Keep away from the remedy in case you are present process abrupt withdrawal from alcohol or different medicine (similar to benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and antiepileptic medicines) or are taking different medicines that comprise bupropion (similar to Wellbutrin and Aplenzin).

Don’t take Contrave in case you are underneath the age of 18, use opioids, are pregnant or breastfeeding, are taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) or have taken them inside 14 days, or are allergic to any of the elements in Contrave.

When you take into account Contrave, make sure you inform your healthcare supplier about each remedy you’re taking. As soon as you have began taking the load loss capsule, speak to your physician about any uncommon signs. After 12 weeks, in case you have not misplaced at the least 5% of your physique weight, your physician could discontinue your therapy with the drug as the shortage of outcomes probably point out that this remedy will give you the results you want.

Different Opioid Antagonists

Different commonly-prescribed FDA-approved opioid antagonists embody:

  • Adipex-P (phentermine)
  • alli (orlistat, 60 mg)
  • Qsymia (phentermine and topiramate)
  • Saxenda (liraglutide [rDNA origin] injection)
  • Xenical (orlistat, 120 mg)


In line with Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc. (the producer), a single Contrave capsule incorporates a mixture of naltrexone (8mg) and bupropion (90mg) in a single pill. The really useful dosage of Contrave is progressive, with the dosage altering from week one of many remedy onward.

Within the first week of taking Contrave, Orexigen recommends a every day morning dose of 1 pill. You shouldn’t take any tablets within the night through the first week.

In week two, the right dosage consists of one pill within the morning and one pill within the night.

In week three, Orexigen recommends two tablets within the morning and one pill within the night.

Lastly, starting with week 4 and onward, the really useful dosage for Contrave is 2 tablets within the morning and two tablets within the night.

All listed dosages are in keeping with the drug producer. Test your prescription and speak to your physician to be sure you are taking the best dose for you.


Converse to your healthcare supplier earlier than starting a Contrave therapy. Your physician could change your really useful dosage if mandatory.

How one can Take and Retailer

When taking Contrave, all the time swallow the pill in its entire type. Don’t minimize, chew, or crush the pill into items.

The utmost variety of tablets to take every day is 4: two within the morning and two within the night. Don’t take multiple dosage (two tablets) at one time, or greater than 4 complete tablets in a single day.

Don’t take Contrave with high-fat meals, as it might enhance your probabilities of a seizure.

When you miss a single dose of Contrave, wait till your subsequent scheduled dose to take it. For instance, in case you miss a morning dose, skip it and easily take your night dose that night time. Do not double your dose within the night and do not take multiple prescribed dose at a time.

When you take greater than the really useful dose of Contrave, contact your physician or go to the emergency room instantly.

Retailer your Contrave remedy at a room temperature of 59F to 86F (15C to 30C). 

Contrave Aspect Results


The commonest unintended effects reported by sufferers taking Contrave embody:

  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Within the scientific trials, 24% of individuals stopped taking Contrave due to unintended effects. Solely 12% of individuals taking the placebo discontinued therapy.


Together with the widespread unintended effects listed above, Contrave also can trigger severe reactions together with suicidal ideas or actions. Bupropion, one of many primary elements in Contrave has been linked with suicidal ideas and should enhance these signs in some individuals whereas taking Contrave.

When you expertise suicidal ideas, have elevated irritability, new or worsened despair or anxiousness, or produce other sudden modifications in your temper or habits, cease taking Contrave and speak to your physician.

Extra extreme unintended effects of Contrave embody seizures, extreme allergic response, sudden enhance in blood strain or decrease blood sugar, potential liver harm, and modifications or points with imaginative and prescient.

Naltrexone, one of many elements in Contrave, also can enhance the probabilities of an opioid overdose, so all the time test along with your physician previous to starting therapy. Taking Contrave could trigger sudden opioid withdrawal in case you have not stopped utilizing opioids previous to beginning Contrave.

Warnings and Interactions

Researchers do not know the way taking Contrave results long-term cardiovascular well being. So in case you are already in danger for heart problems, it’s possible you’ll need to communicate to your physician concerning the potential for hurt in case you take this weight reduction drug. The drugmaker started a randomized scientific trial in early 2016 to guage the guts well being security of Contrave. Nevertheless, the examine was terminated early after an information leak, and no additional outcomes have been launched.

Researchers additionally do not know the way Contrave interacts with different weight reduction merchandise, together with prescription medicines, over-the-counter medicine, and natural dietary supplements. Make sure you let your physician know in case you are taking some other prescription or non-prescription therapy once you focus on whether or not or not the remedy is best for you.

Black Field Warning

Contrave is required to hold a black field warning stating that customers must be cautious about an elevated danger of suicidal ideas and behaviors in adolescents and younger adults. Individuals who have skilled despair or mania may even see their situations return whereas on Contrave. 

Do not eat massive quantities of alcohol whereas taking Contrave. When you do eat alcohol frequently and in massive portions, communicate along with your physician earlier than stopping. Slicing alcohol fully whereas taking Contrave can enhance your probabilities of a seizure.


The variety of Contrave tablets that you just take every day will decide the general value. In line with prescribing info supplied by the corporate, your dose is more likely to differ as you proceed with the therapy.

The price of Contrave varies from about $99 per 30 days to over $250 per 30 days relying on dose, location, and insurance coverage protection. The drugmaker gives a reduction coupon plan for individuals whose insurance coverage doesn’t cowl Contrave or who do not need insurance coverage protection. With the financial savings card, you might be able to pay not more than $4 a day for a month-to-month prescription.

A Phrase From Verywell

There isn’t any weight reduction remedy that works completely for everybody. Speak to your physician about your eating regimen and train expertise and your medical historical past to find out if Contrave may give you the results you want. You have to to remain in touch along with your healthcare group and have a robust dedication to nutritious consuming and common bodily exercise to make it possible for your physique stays sturdy and wholesome. 

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