Wellbutrin

bupropion (for depression)

By GlaxoSmithKline

What is this medication for?

Bupropion belongs to the family of medications known as antidepressants. It is used for the treatment of depression. It works by affecting the balance of chemicals that are associated with depression.

Although you may start feeling better within a few weeks of treatment, the full effects of the medication may not be evident until 4 to 6 weeks of treatment have passed.

Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed here. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here. If you are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.

Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.

What form(s) does this medication come in?

Wellbutrin® is available as:

  • tablet
    • 75 mg
    • 100 mg
Some medications may have other generic brands available. Always ask your doctor or pharmacist about the safety of switching between brands of the same medication.

How should I use this medication?

The usual starting dose of bupropion (regular release) for the treatment of depression is 100 mg twice daily. Your doctor may choose to increase the dose depending on your response to the medication. The usual recommended dose of bupropion is 100 mg 3 times daily. There should be at least 6 hours between doses.

The usual starting dose of bupropion (sustained release) for treatment of depression is 150 mg once daily in the morning. Your doctor may choose to increase the dose depending on your response to the medication. The usual recommended dose of bupropion is 150 mg twice daily. There should be at least 8 hours between doses.

It is important to swallow the bupropion tablets whole. The sustained-release formulations of this medication should not be chewed, crushed, or broken.

Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.

It is important to take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.

Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor, as some people experience physical symptoms when stopping the medication suddenly. Your doctor may want you to decrease the dose of the medication gradually when it is time to stop taking bupropion.

Store this medication at room temperature, protect it from light and moisture, and keep it out of the reach of children.

This medication is available under multiple brand names and/or in several different forms. Any specific brand name of this medication may not be available in all of the forms listed here. The forms available for the specific brand you have searched are listed under "What form(s) does this medication come in?"

Who should NOT take this medication?

Do not take this medication if you:

  • are allergic to bupropion or any ingredients of this medication
  • are having abrupt withdrawal from alcohol or sedatives
  • are taking another medication that contains bupropion (e.g., Zyban® or Wellbutrin® XL)
  • have a seizure disorder
  • have or have had an eating disorder (bulimia or anorexia nervosa)
  • have taken a monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor (e.g., phenelzine, tranylcypromine) within the past 14 days
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The contents of this health site are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition.

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