Inhibits the enzyme aldehyde dehydrogenase, this results in toxic accumulation of acetaldehyde one of the initial breakdown products of alcohol. The alcohol-disulfiram reaction is unpleasant and discourages alcohol ingestion.
Hypersensitivity to thiuram derivatives used in pesticides and rubber vulcanization; severe myocardial disease or coronary occlusion; psychoses; patients receiving or who have recently received metronidazole, paraldehyde, alcohol, or alcohol-containing products.
Causes severe alcohol-intolerance reaction. Symptoms include flushing, throbbing in head and neck, respiratory difficulty, nausea, vomiting, sweating, thirst, chest pain, palpitations, shortness of breath, tachycardia, hypotension, syncope, weakness, vertigo, blurred vision, and confusion. In severe reactions, there may be respiratory depression, cardiovascular collapse, unconsciousness, convulsions, and death.
Disulfiram may increase anticoagulant effect.
May produce acute organic brain syndrome.
Disulfiram decreases plasma clearance of benzodiazepines metabolized by oxidation, possible increase in CNS side effects.
CNS side effects of chlorzoxazone may be increased.
CV side effects of cocaine may be increased.
Disulfiram may increase serum hydantoin levels.
Acute behavioral and coordination changes.
May cause patients to exhibit acute toxic psychosis or confusional state. One or both agents may need to be discontinued.
Disulfiram may inhibit metabolism and increase effect of theophyllines.