"What does the research reveal on Welbutrin side effects?"

Some concerns are growing about Welbutrin side effects due to the fact that they have included cases of suicidal thoughts and attempts in children and adolescents with depression.

Here we will reveal the Welbutrin research and offer you some exciting safe solutions based on further scientific research...

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"What are the most common side effects?"

First off, the most common Welbutrin side effects are often dry mouth, tremors, anxiety, loss of appetite, agitation, dizziness, headache, excessive sweating, increased risk of seizure, and insomnia. Agitation or insomnia is most obvious shortly after starting on the drug.

You may find yourself in the 18.6% of patients suffering from insomnia who take Welbutrin (bupropion is the generic scientific name). Two percent stop Welbutrin because of insomnia and agitation. On the other hand, you may find yourself in the 19.8% of patients who experience sleepiness instead of insomnia.

Welbutrin side effects can also included mania and psychosis which is when your thought and perception become severely impaired. You may experience hallucinations, hold delusional beliefs and paranoid delusions, suffer from personality changes and experience disorganized thinking.

There have also been rare cases of Welbutrin side effects to include significant liver damage. In a German study, five cases of pancreatitis with clinical symptoms such as abdominal pain, and anorexia have been reported. (These Welbutrin side effects were reversible after patients stopped taking the drug.)

Welbutrin side effects can also include dose dependent high blood pressure and heart attack.

Painful erection has also been found among Welbutrin side effects, but these were few cases. Warnings say immediate treatment is necessary, because the untreated patient may lose his possibility to have erections totally. Yikes!

Cases of hair loss in patients taking Welbutrin is 0.1 to 1%. Although the incidence is low, it cannot be ruled out as a potential cause for the hair loss. (The only way to establish a direct relationship, is to substitute a different antidepressant.)

Edema (fluid retention) has been reported in 1% of patients taking Welbutrin.

"Does Welbutrin react negatively if taken with other drugs?"

The serious Welbutrin side effects can also increase when the drug is taken with other medications. Warnings say to study the packing insert carefully and ask your prescribing physician in any case of doubt.

"Can you become addicted to Welbutrin?"

Have you ever used cocaine or speed? Studies have shown that Welbutrin side effects can include a moderate likelihood of addiction in people who have used cocaine or speed. Abuse has not become a significant problem in clinical usage, but Welbutrin should be given with caution to patients with a history of drug or alcohol abuse or dependence.

Bupropion is not a controlled substance. In clinical practise, Welbutrin has been shown that the dose required for significant abuse would cause seizures in most patients.

A visit to MedicineNet gives this disturbing quote: "If antidepressants are discontinued abruptly, symptoms may occur such as dizziness, headache, nausea, changes in mood, or changes in the sense of smell, taste, etc. (Such symptoms even may occur when even a few doses of antidepressant are missed.) Therefore, it is recommended that the dose of antidepressant be reduced gradually when therapy is discontinued."

"Are there warnings for children?"

As mentioned earlier, Welbutrin side effects have included incidence of suicidal thoughts and attempts in children and adolescents with depression. So, that being said, when treating major depressive disorder in young children, the clinical benefits must be weighed carefully against the hazards. Usually, Welbutrin is not prescribed for pediatric patients under age 18.

"Is there a link between suicide and Welbutrin?"

It has been suggested that Welbutrin may cause depression to worsen and even lead to suicide in a small number of patients. These potential Welbutrin side effects are difficult to evaluate in depressed patients because depression can progress with or without treatment, and suicide is itself a consequence of depression.

Unfortunately, the evidence supporting these potential side effects is weak. Therefore, no final conclusions have been drawn about the relationship between Welbutrin and worsening depression and suicide. Until better information is available, patients receiving Welbutrin must be carefully monitored for worsening depression and suicidal tendencies.

"What is the background history on Welbutrin?"

Bupropion was first created by Burroughs Research in 1966, and patented by Burroughs-Wellcome (later Glaxo-Wellcome, and, as of 2000, GlaxoSmithKline) in 1974. It was approved by the FDA in 1985 and marketed under the name Welbutrin as an antidepressant, but clinical trials indicated that incidence of seizure was two to four times greater than other antidepressants and the drug was quickly pulled from the market.

It was then discovered that reducing the dose by about half greatly reduced the risk of seizures. Glaxo then developed a sustained-release (SR) version of Wellbutrin which releases the drug at a slower rate. The SR version is taken twice a day, to decrease the possibility of side effects and seizures. It is also available in generic form (Bupropion SR). Extended Release bupropion, Wellbutrin XL, is the most recent formulation of bupropion and is taken orally once a day. (Currently, four of every 1000 persons who receive Welbutrin in doses less than 450 mg/day experience seizures.)

Talk to your doctor if you are experiencing side effects from using Welbutrin.

"What are my options?"

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Sources:

Wellbutrin Pharmacology, Pharmacokinetics, Studies, Metabolism - Bupropion - RxList Monographs / Retrieved February 13, 2006 from http://www.rxlist.com/cgi/generic/buprop_cp.htm

Information About Bupropion, or Amfebutamone, Sold As Wellbutrin or Zyban/ Retrieved February 13, 2006 from http://www.counsellingresource.com/medications/drug-pages/bupropion.html

NAMI Wellbutrin / Retrieved February 13, 2006 from http://www.nami.org

Bupropion: What Mechanism of Action? / Retrieved February 13, 2006 from http://www.preskorn.com/columns/0001.html

Discovery Health Channel: Drug Reference Center: bupropion (oral) / Retrieved February 13, 2006 from http://health.discovery.com/encyclopedias/reference/drug.jsp?drug=47395

Bupropion article from mentalhealth.com / Retrieved February 13, 2006 from http://www.mentalhealth.com/drug/p30-b04.html

A Review of the Neuropharmacology of Bupropion, a Dual Norepinephrine and Dopamine Reuptake Inhibitor / Retrieved February 13, 2006 from http://www.psychiatrist.com/pcc/pccpdf/v06n04/v06n0403.pdf

"Bupropion." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. 19 Feb 2006, 15:41 UTC. 3 Mar 2006, 22:43 .

MedicineNet - Retrieved February 13, 2006 from http://www.medicinenet.com/pdf/depressionmedications.pdf

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