Wellbutrin XL (bupropion hydrochloride) is an oral prescription drug for major depressive disorder (MDD) and seasonal affective disorder (SAD). It also contains an active ingredient that could aid smoking cessation.
This antidepressant medication works as a reuptake inhibitor of the neurotransmitters dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine. Thus, these neurotransmitters will increase and will become more efficient in transmitting messages to other nerves. Additionally, unlike SSRIs or any other antidepressants, Wellbutrin XL’s primary effect is on dopamine.
Read the medication guide or label that comes with this drug. Take this medication exactly as prescribed. It is available in Wellbutrin XL 150mg and Wellbutrin XL 300mg. Do not change your dose into a smaller or larger dosage unless prescribed by your physician.
This medication could be taken with or without food unless you develop a stomach upset. In that case, you may have to take the tablet with food. Do not crush, chew or dissolve the tablet in liquid.
Since Wellbutrin XL is an extended-release tablet, it is usually taken only once a day, in the morning. It should be taken at the same time of the day at a 24-hour interval. Avoid taking an extra tablet if you miss a dose. In this case, go back to your regular schedule. Never take two doses simultaneously, as this could increase the chance of seizure.
Do not change your dose or stop abruptly while on medication. Always follow the doctor’s advice for the Wellbutrin XL dosage and how long you should continue to take it.
This medication tablet is covered in a shell that slowly releases the medicine into your system. You may notice something that looks like a shell in your stool. Note that this is normal, and it is just the empty shell that passed through your body.
Some common side effects of Wellbutrin XL are:
-loss of appetite
You may encounter several possible side effects but note that the potential benefits of this medication are more significant than the adverse reactions you may experience.
Some severe side effects you should watch out for are seizure, hallucination, irrational fears, irregular heartbeat, and severe hypertension. Contact your doctor or any healthcare provider immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.
Before starting Wellbutrin XL, tell your doctor about your entire medical history. It is essential to disclose previous episodes of seizure, drug or alcohol abuse, eating disorders, diabetes, hypertension, kidney problems, or any heart diseases.
Take this medication only if you have a known allergy to bupropion hydrochloride or any ingredients this may have. Some signs of an allergic reaction are skin rash, hives, and trouble breathing.
Each patient taking antidepressants for any indication should be closely monitored for worsening symptoms, warning signs of suicide, and unusual behavior changes, especially during the first few months of Wellbutrin XL drug therapy.
Seizure while on this medication is usually dose-related. Do not exceed more than what is prescribed. Increasing of dosage should be done gradually and with the advice of the physician. If you experience seizure, discontinue Wellbutrin XL and do not restart.
Do not use Wellbutrin XL two weeks before or after taking monoamine oxidase or MAO inhibitors.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference betweenWellbutrin SR vs XL?
Wellbutrin SR is a sustained-release medication, whereas Wellbutrin XL is an extended-release medication. The XL version remains longer in the system because it is released more slowly.
What are the signs that Wellbutrin XL is working?
Improvement in sleep, energy, and appetite are among the initial signs that Wellbutrin XL is working.
What are the signs of seizure that I should watch out for when taking Wellbutrin XL?
Signs of impending seizure are odd feelings (“aura”}, unusual smell, confusion, numbness, and involuntary movements of arms and legs.
Can Wellbutrin XL cause anxiety?
Anxiety is one of the side effects you may experience while taking this medication.
If I am taking Zyban to quit smoking, can I take Wellbutrin XL for depression?
No. Combination of these drugs will increase the possibility of seizures.