Prescription onlyLower-cost generic available

Wellbutrin

(Bupropion)

  • Pill
  • Extended release
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Improves mood.

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Prescription onlyLower-cost generic available

Our pharmacists’ bottom line

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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  • 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.
  • 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.

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Side effects for Wellbutrin (Bupropion)

From clinical trials of Wellbutrin / Depression (300mg to 600mg per day) ( 508)

  • AgitationAgitation32% for Wellbutrin vs.22% for placebo
  • Dry mouthDry mouth28% for Wellbutrin vs.18% for placebo
  • Headache/migraineHeadache/migraine26% for Wellbutrin vs.22% for placebo
  • ConstipationConstipation26% for Wellbutrin vs.17% for placebo
  • Nausea/vomitingNausea/vomiting23% for Wellbutrin vs.19% for placebo
  • Excessive sweatingExcessive sweating22% for Wellbutrin vs.15% for placebo
  • DizzinessDizziness22% for Wellbutrin vs.16% for placebo
  • TremorTremor21% for Wellbutrin vs.8% for placebo
  • SleepinessSleepiness20% for Wellbutrin vs.20% for placebo
  • Sleep difficultySleep difficulty19% for Wellbutrin vs.16% for placebo

What to expect when you take Wellbutrin (Bupropion) for Depression

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Tips from our pharmacists
  • 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.

Risks and Warnings for Wellbutrin (Bupropion)

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    • Higher risk if:
    • Age 24 years or younger

    Wellbutrin (Bupropion) may increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior. Watch for worsening depression or any unusual changes in mood or behavior, especially during the first few months of treatment or when the dose changes. Report anything concerning to a doctor immediately. Wellbutrin (Bupropion) is not approved for use in children younger than age 18.

    This is a black box warning. The FDA requires this warning when there is a significant risk of serious or life-threatening effects that anyone taking the drug should consider.

Means that some groups have a high risk of experiencing this side effect

Tips from pharmacists and people taking Wellbutrin (Bupropion)

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The FDA category for this medication is C. It is advised that you: Weigh risks vs. benefits
Pregnancy
Alcohol
  • Upsides and downsides from our pharmacists
  • 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.
  • I did not drink alcohol for the first 2 months, and then drank at home before going out. No negative effects. I feel like myself for the first time in years.
    Age: 26
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression
  • Common side effects include: massive horniness/promiscuity, arhythmias (tachycardia, possibly also caused my Long Qt syndrome). Also experienced tactile and auditory hallucinations. Some on wellbutrin abuse alcohol b/c they can drink longer
    Taken for: Bipolar disorder
    Duration taken: Two years or more
Food
  • I take regular release, for me the extended release kept me up at night. I take it about an hour after I wake up, after coffee and with food.
    Age: 54
    Gender: Woman
Kidneys & liver
  • Risks from our pharmacists
  • 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.
Sex
  • Upsides and downsides from our pharmacists
  • 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.
  • Tips from our pharmacists
  • There are no sexual side effects from this medication.
  • Trouble sleeping and speedy feeling at first. After a few days, that went away and over weeks my mood improved. No sexual side effects!
    Age: 28
    Gender: Man
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: A few months
  • I transitioned to generic Wellburin from generic Zoloft because Zoloft was interfering in my sexual response, mostly inability to orgasm. For this purpose the Wellbutrin work, but it leaves me anxious and irritable. I'm trying something els
    Age: 72
    Gender: Man
    Duration taken: A couple weeks
  • Pros: stabilizes my mood without making me feel flat, no sexual side effects. Cons: dry mouth, suppresses my appetite even a year+ in (resulted in somewhat rapid weight-loss for me). *Beware of differences between generic manufacturers!*
    Age: 29
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: A year or so
Sleep
  • Tips from our pharmacists
  • Wellbutrin (Bupropion) makes you energized, so take it in the morning to avoid difficulty sleeping later that night.
  • It has affected my sleep much less than other drugs. Initially, it suppressed my appetite quite a bit
    Age: 30
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: A few months
  • Taking it in the morning meant I didn't stay up for a few hours when I should have been sleeping
    Age: 29
    Gender: Man
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: Two years or more
  • Trouble sleeping and speedy feeling at first. After a few days, that went away and over weeks my mood improved. No sexual side effects!
    Age: 28
    Gender: Man
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: A few months
Weight gain or loss
  • Upsides and downsides from our pharmacists
  • It's less likely to cause weight gain than other antidepressants.
  • Risks from our pharmacists
  • Wellbutrin (Bupropion) may cause weight loss. Talk to your doctor if weight loss is not desirable.
  • Pros: stabilizes my mood without making me feel flat, no sexual side effects. Cons: dry mouth, suppresses my appetite even a year+ in (resulted in somewhat rapid weight-loss for me). *Beware of differences between generic manufacturers!*
    Age: 29
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression
    Duration taken: A year or so
  • Lost weight at first but that subsided.
    Age: 42
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression
  • Really helps my depression and effectiveness of Zoloft. Having trouble keeping weight off even though I work out daily.
    Age: 17
    Gender: Woman
    Taken for: Depression