Compare Pristiq vs. Wellbutrin

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Pristiq
(desvenlafaxine)

Wellbutrin
(bupropion)

Improves mood. Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine) is basically the same medication as Effexor, which is cheaper because it's available as a generic.Improves mood. Wellbutrin (Bupropion) is good for treating depression and has fewer sexual side effects than other antidepressants, but you need to be okay with avoiding alcohol.
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Best available price for 60 (75mg) tablets of bupropion
Reviews & ratings
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4.81Pristiq
Reviews for Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)
53%
of people (All ages) say Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) is worth it
49%
say it works well
23%
say it's a big hassle
196 reviews
Have you used Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Wellbutrin (bupropion)
60%
+7% better vs. Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)
40%
-9% worse vs. Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)
13%
+10% better vs. Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)
1164 reviews
Have you used Wellbutrin (bupropion)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
PristiqWellbutrin
  • Nausea 16%
  • Dry mouth 8%
  • Sleep difficulty 6%
  • Excessive sweating 7%
  • Dizziness 5%
  • Drowsiness 5%
  • Constipation 5%
  • Decreased appetite 6%
  • Fatigue 3%
  • Anxiety 3%
More Pristiq side effects »
  • Agitation 10%
  • Dry mouth 10%
  • Headache/migraine 4%
  • Constipation 9%
  • Nausea/vomiting 4%
  • Excessive sweating 7%
  • Dizziness 6%
  • Tremor 13%
  • Sleep difficulty 3%
More Wellbutrin side effects »
How it works
PristiqWellbutrin
Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine) is a serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) antidepressant. It increases serotonin and norepinephrine activity in the brain, which regulates mood.Wellbutrin (Bupropion) is an atypical antidepressant. Researchers don't know exactly how it works, but it seems to change dopamine and norepinephrine activity in the brain, which regulate mood.
Type of medication
PristiqWellbutrin
Prescription only
Prescription only
Available as
PristiqWellbutrin
  • Extended release
  • Pill
  • Extended release
Used for
PristiqWellbutrin
Risk factors for serious side effects
PristiqWellbutrin
  • Age 24 years or younger
  • Using other medications that affect serotonin
  • Stopping Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine) suddenly
  • History of high blood pressure
  • Taking other blood-thinning drugs
Detailed Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) risks & warnings »
  • Age 24 years or younger
  • History of depression
  • History of bipolar disorder
  • At risk for bipolar disorder
  • Withdrawing from nicotine
Detailed Wellbutrin (bupropion) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Alcohol
PristiqWellbutrin
No alcohol related info.
  • Has a higher risk of causing seizures, especially if you have a seizure disorder, eating disorder, or if you drink alcohol. So, it's not a good medication if you drink a lot.
Kidneys and liver
PristiqWellbutrin
No kidneys and liver related info.
  • Wellbutrin (Bupropion) is processed by the kidney and liver. If you have kidney or liver problems, you may need a different dose to prevent increased risk for side effects.
Weight
PristiqWellbutrin
No weight related info.
  • It's less likely to cause weight gain than other antidepressants.
Upsides and benefits
PristiqWellbutrin
  • Effective at relieving symptoms and lowering relapse rates for depression.
  • Six out of ten people who use an antidepressant for the first time find that it works for them.
  • Effective at relieving depression symptoms.
  • Causes fewer sexual side effects than other antidepressants. Can actually boost sex drive for some people.
  • Can be taken with other antidepressants to counteract their sexual side effects.
  • Has some stimulant effects, so it can be energizing.
  • Can help with ADHD symptoms.
  • Also used to suppress appetite and help you quit smoking.
  • Six out of ten people who use an antidepressant for the first time find that it works for them.
Downsides and risks
PristiqWellbutrin
  • Similar to Effexor, without any extra benefits in clinical studies.
  • Can cause sexual side effects (usually low libido or the inability to have an orgasm or ejaculate).
  • Not available in generic form, so it's more expensive.
  • Like most antidepressants, can cause higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people age 24 and younger.
  • The first antidepressant you try doesn't always work or it can cause side effects you really don't like. You might need to try a few different medications until you find one that works for you.
  • Wellbutrin (Bupropion) can be stimulating, so it can cause anxiety or insomnia the first few days you're taking it.
  • Generally not as good as other antidepressants for people who have anxiety.
  • It's less likely to cause weight gain than other antidepressants.
  • Has a higher risk of causing seizures, especially if you have a seizure disorder, eating disorder, or if you drink alcohol. So, it's not a good medication if you drink a lot.
  • It contains the same ingredient as a medication that helps you to stop smoking, (Zyban), so these two meds can't be used together.
  • Like most antidepressants, it can cause a higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people younger than 24.
  • The first antidepressant you try doesn't always work or it can cause side effects you really don't like. You might need to try a few different medications until you find one that works for you.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
PristiqWellbutrin
  • Takes 8 to 12 weeks to see full effects on mood.
  • Can cause sweating and high blood pressure.
  • Stop taking slowly to avoid withdrawal symptoms.
  • Tell your doctor if you notice sudden mood changes or unusual thoughts.
  • Wellbutrin (Bupropion) makes you energized, so take it in the morning to avoid difficulty sleeping later that night.
  • Takes about 8 to 12 weeks to see the medication's full effects on your mood.
  • There are no sexual side effects from this medication.
  • Stop taking it slowly to avoid getting withdrawal symptoms.
  • Tell your doctor if you notice sudden mood changes or unusual thoughts.
  • The extended-release tablet shell can show up unchanged in your stool, but don't worry since the medication was still absorbed by your body.
Learn more
More about PristiqSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about WellbutrinSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Wellbutrin (bupropion)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it