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What is Medically Assisted Treatment (MAT)
Gold Standard of care

Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) is the use of medications, in combination with counseling and behavioral therapies.  to provide a “whole-patient” approach to the treatment of substance use disorders. It is also important to address other health conditions during treatment.

MAT Medications

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved several different medications to treat alcohol and opioid use disorders MAT medications relieve the withdrawal symptoms and psychological cravings that cause chemical imbalances in the body. Medications used for MAT are evidence-based treatment options and do not just substitute one drug for another.



Naltrexone blocks the euphoric effects of alcohol intoxication. The goal of this specific medication is to help individuals disassociate alcohol from pleasurable feelings and experiences. Ultimately, this interaction encourages the individual to maintain his/her commitment to recovery. Administered in tablet (ReVia and Depade) and injectable forms (Vivitrol), naltrexone treatment is most effective in conjunction with behavioral therapy and a comprehensive treatment plan for recovery.


Acamprosate (Campral) is a medication that is most beneficial for individuals who have worked through the initial phase of detoxification and alcohol withdrawal symptoms. This medication is typically administered on the fifth day of abstinence and will reach its full effectiveness within five to eight days after the first dose. Acamprosate is administered in tablet form, three times a day. It reduces cravings while improving an individual’s chances of abstinence when combined with comprehensive therapy and treatment.



Suboxone and Vivitrol are both used to treat opioid use disorders. These medications work the same way in the brain but are administered differently. 

Overcoming opioid addiction, whether it is prescriptions or illicit opioids, is difficult. First, the withdrawal symptoms are painful and challenging. In addition, opioids are so addictive that many people crave opioids even when they aren’t getting high. Fortunately, medications like Suboxone and the Vivitrol shot are used to help reduce cravings, minimize withdrawal symptoms, and ultimately reduce rates of relapse. 




Currently, there are no approved medications to treat meth addiction.

Findings in a Phase III clinical trial released by NIH showed that a combination of two medications—injectable naltrexone and oral bupropion—were safe and effective in the treatment of adults with moderate or severe methamphetamine use disorder.

Results of the study, which was conducted at multiple sites within the NIDA Clinical Trials Network, were published late Wednesday by the New England Journal of Medicine.

Unlike for opioids, there are currently no approved medications for treating methamphetamine use disorder, leaving providers to treat the illness with other approaches, such as cognitive behavioral therapy and contingency management interventions. The study could mark a significant step toward making MAT a viable modality for methamphetamine use disorder.

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