Wellbutrin XL (bupropion extended-release) is a medication prescribed to treat Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). MDD and SAD are mood disorders where a person experiences depressed moods (emptiness, sadness, etc.), decreased interest in normal activity, changes in sleep, changes in diet, low energy, difficulty concentrating, and similar symptoms that last for at least two weeks and often many months.
Wellbutrin XL works by increasing the levels of neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine in certain parts of the brain. By increasing these neurotransmitters consistently over several weeks, Wellbutrin XL normalizes levels of these neurotransmitters, helping return the mood to normal.
Take Wellbutrin XL once daily at the same time each day. The normal dosage ranges from 150-450 mg.
Note that other formulations of the active ingredient like Wellbutrin (bupropion immediate-release) and Wellbutrin SR (bupropion sustained-release) are not interchangeable with Wellbutrin XL.
The active ingredient in Wellbutrin XL is bupropion hydrochloride.
Wellbutrin XL may increase the risk of seizures and should be used with caution in people with epilepsy or a history of seizures.
In some short-term studies, antidepressants increased the risk of suicidal ideation and action in children and young adults. Since depression itself is associated with suicidal thoughts and behaviors, this should not be a reason to forgo treatment. Friends and family members should be alert to suicidal thoughts and actions in patients that are starting antidepressants, but this risk does not remain over the long-term. Adults over 24 did not show an increased risk.
Wellbutrin XL side effects may include:
- Abdominal Pain
- Chest pain
- Dry Mouth