View Full Version : Scared after reading Wellbutrin leaflet

09-21-12, 06:56 PM
Hi everyone!

After unsuccessfully trying Celexa (20mg/d for 4 weeks) and Remeron (30mg/d) for almost 2 months my doc now wants me to try Bupropion (150mg, time-released capsule).

I suffer mainly from depression,anxiety and also symptoms of ADD, but my main issues are depression and anxiety.

My doc said that Bupropion helps against depression and also ADD. If I really had ADD then should I feel a difference under it?

And I'm also a bit scared after reading the leaflet. Points which scare me were: high blood pressure, which according to the leaflet can be dangerously high, convulsions, and it also mentioned rare potentially lethal allergic reactions of the skin.

According to the leaflet I wonder if it's even save to drive a car while being on it. I mean what happens if all of a sudden you faint or get convulsions? :eek:

These side effects are pretty scary. Remeron did not have such scary side effects. Maybe I shouldn't have read the leaflet. :(

The leaflet also says that alcohol is problematic when you take this stuff. Does this mean that you can't take Bupro in the morning and drink a beer or a glas of wine in the evening to become tired?

09-21-12, 08:53 PM
They don't typically put an insert in the package with Tylenol,
but the side effects from that are just as scary to read about.

High blood pressure isn't even listed, but that's a problem I had when I was
taking no more than 4 Tylenol a day on a regular basis, less than many doctors
recommend for chronic pain.

When I stopped taking it, within 3 days my blood pressure was back to normal.

The doctor I was seeing knew I was taking Tylenol for pain and didn't make
the connection with my dangerously high blood pressure. I had to do some
research on the internet and figure it out for myself. :(

If you already have blood pressure concerns (family history or currently high
readings) many meds can cause an increase, including stimulant meds and Tylenol.

When Wellbutrin side effects do occur, in most cases they are minor and either
require no treatment or can easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider.

Compare the Wellbutrin side effects list with the Tylenol side effects list:

Wellbutrin side effects
Weight loss (see Wellbutrin and Weight Loss (
Dry mouth (see Wellbutrin and Dry Mouth (
Constipation (
Headaches (
Nausea or vomiting
Increased sweating
Shakiness (tremors)
Insomnia (see Wellbutrin and Insomnia (
Appetite loss.

Tylenol side effects
Nausea and vomiting
Appetite loss
Diarrhea (
Abdominal pain, especially near the liver (the upper-right part of the stomach)
Yellow eyes or skin (jaundice)
Liver failure
Kidney failure
Heart problems
Seizures (
As far as drinking while taking Wellbutrin, give yourself time to acclimate to the Wellbutrin
and see what side effects you may have, and whether they fade over time.

If you're doing well, you can probably tolerate a glass of beer or wine in the evening.
More than that might make the symptoms of anxiety even worse, so keep it light.

... info from:

09-22-12, 02:05 PM
Wellbutrin is a pretty benign medication.

Like Lunacie said, you'd be scared to take Tylenol if you read the leaflet.

Also, btw, 20mg of Celexa is too low a dose to give up on. I would give it another try at 40, or perhaps even 50 or 60. 40 is more or less the "average" dose.

Not sure about Remeron.

I take Celexa 40mg + Wellbutrin SR 150mg 2 to 3 times a day.

With Celexa I had initial drowsiness that lasted for about a week and a half, and a permanent loss of libido which has been mitigated some since I added Wellbutrin.

I had no side effects from Wellbutrin on 150 mg. You should stay at that dose for about three weak before you titrate up, if at all; to avoid anxiety and insomnia. Again, these
symptoms went away for me within a few days.

09-24-12, 10:06 PM
I know that also non-prescription drugs like aspirin could kill you but since everyone takes them it's not that scary.

My opinion is that the side effects of remeron were less scary than those of wellbutrin. Especially the seizure stuff is scary.

I also worry what if taking a drug which stimulates you makes my anxiety worse and causes even more stress? Or what if boosting dopamine can make you become psychotic?
I just worry what could happen if you intervene into the metabolism of the brain and simply decide to manipulate with a few neurotransmitters.

I would also feel much better if I could start with a really low dose and then work my way up but then I'd have to open the capsule and take some of the stuff out and close it again and I don't know if this is dangerous or not. The leaflet said that if you bite on it and it gets released faster than usual then the risk of seizure is much higher. I don't know if opening and closing the capsule could somehow reduce the slow-release effect of the capsule.

@ Abi

Celexa at 40mg is a pretty high dose. I read that celexa at high doses can cause heart rhythm disorders. If I remember it correctly I think it can prolong the QT time which can be dangerous. I have had heart rhythm disorders in the past and wouldn't want to go higher than 20mg. I think you should ask your doctor about this and you should also get an EKG at your intern's office or go to a cardiologist to see if there are QT interval changes.

You say you take 150mg wellbutrin 2-3 times a day? Isn't such a high dose dangerous because of the risk of seizures?

And what exactly do you feel from the wellbutrin? Do you take it against ADD or against depression? Do you feel an instant effect from it
kinda like when you take Ritalin or some other stimulant?

08-26-13, 10:56 AM
I was also put on Celexa but pretty much felt the side effects and no improvement so I stopped. The doc now has me on Wellbutrin and I've been on it since Thursday. He told me to double my dose after a week. So far the only side effects I feel is headaches (which seem to have stopped) and energy which is kinda weird cause I've never really had energy naturally so I've gotta get used to it. I read that it could take at least a couple of weeks to work on the ADD which makes sense because it pretty much has to change you brain chemistry. I'll keep you updated if I get anymore side effects.

08-26-13, 01:32 PM
You need to read more than just the leaflet - keep going until you get to the charts with the percentages of people in the clinical trials who actually experienced the side effects.

The package inserts for prescription medications list the most dangerous side effects first, not the most common ones. When you actually look at the numbers, you'll see that while the dangerous side effects are pretty scary, almost nobody gets them - and few of them come on without warning or are irreversible. For example:

Grand mal seizures have been reported in 0.4% of patients undergoing bupropion therapy at dosages up to 450 mg daily. The incidence of seizures increases dramatically at higher dosages. The seizure rate in patients taking sustained-release bupropion up to a dosage of 300 mg/day (e.g. for smoking cessation) has been approximated at 0.1%.

4 people out of a thousand getting a seizure at a high dose is not as scary as your risk at 150mg/day. Most of the people who get seizures in these studies also have pre-existing seizure disorders, sometimes undiagnosed until they get a seizure in the study.

Be wary, but be realistic.

08-26-13, 02:16 PM
One of our previous builders used zyban (buproprion HCl) to give up smoking - and out of nowhere - his face/jaw seized up soon after starting -
he quit the meds of course.

08-27-13, 09:41 AM
For wellbutrin, there are studies that show it has better than placebo effect in improving ADHD symptoms. See here ( an article on it. anyway, there are potential side effects that are scary, but every med has scary potential side effects.

I think Remeron has listed that it could cause immune system problems!

08-27-13, 11:11 AM
I am also scared of this drug. From day 2, I started having severe side effects that grew in number the next day and the next day... I took it for a total of 7 days, with a 3-day break in between. It was awful. I cannot believe a drug can have so many side effects and still be prescribed frequently! I had nausea, dizziness, foggy head, memory loss, itchiness that turned into a rash, possible paranoia, high blood pressure, chest discomfort, hand tremors, weakness in my legs, headache, etc. etc. And very little in the way of positive effects. And sometimes side effects don't show up till months or years in! Like hives, seizures, and nausea! You could be hospitalized easily for hives and seizures! I would recommend against taking this drug. Especially do not take the generic, Bupropion, which is what I took and which I've read over and over tends to have more side effects than the brand name. I was prescribed Wellbutrin, but the fools at the pharmacy gave me Bupropion. ugh. If you take it, make sure to get the brand name!

also, I have not read a lot of reports of Wellbutrin helping more than a small amount with ADD. It's primarily for depression. But if you have anxiety, it's probably an even worse idea.

Other drugs like methylphenidate can have some of these side effects as well, but usually not the whole bloody lot of them at once!

another thing: stay hydrated before taking the drug. The sudden rise in blood pressure if you are dehydrated will make you more dizzy/nauseous than otherwise.

08-27-13, 09:48 PM
If that kind of thing happens to you with any medication, then you need to call your doctor immediately and confirm whether or not to stop it. (Obviously, if you experience any of the symptoms in the leaflet that say "stop taking this medication immediately if. . ." then you stop first, then call the doctor.)

Most of these medications are well-tolerated by most people. That doesn't mean that you won't have a bad experience, or that you will have the same experience as someone on the internet tells you they had. Be pragmatic. The likelihood of you experiencing an immediate, dangerous, irreversible reaction from these medications is incredibly small - about the same as the risk from taking an over the counter NSAID, which are notorious for triggering severe and unexpected reactions.

I'm not pooh-pooh-ing anyone's personal experience, just trying to put the risk into perspective. I have plenty of stories of horrid reactions to medications, but it doesn't make me fearful of all of them.

09-01-13, 11:20 PM
Here's something that you have to remember about reading leaflets....These side effects are reported regardless of the circumstances coming from the person who was taking the medication. So some of these side effects could be from abusing it.

Wellbutrin can act like a stimulant ADHD medication, which is why it sometimes increases blood pressure especially when it's taken with other stimulants like Adderall and Ritalin. Let's not forget, the convulsions and seizures are more likely to occur in persons who have family histories of seizures. ALSO, convulsions can occur in those who abuse the drug. If you have no history of seizures and you don't plan on abusing it...then you should be fine. Keep in mind that the Convulsions/Seizures side effect has to be reported because there are people who take Wellbutrin in combination with Adderall and Ritalin....These medications independently lower the seizure threshold thus making a person more vulnerable to seizures. . .but even's still quite rare for a person with no history to just get seizures out of nowhere.

The potentially lethal allergic reactions are extremely rare that it's not even funny.

When it comes to alcohol...I will tell you what I have read and what my physician has told me. You can have's just you have to be EXTREMELY careful. Remember when I explained the lowering of the seizure threshold? Alcohol can do that too. You don't want to consume too many things that can lower the seizure threshold....because that makes seizures more likely to happen. The best thing to do in this case is to lower your alcohol intake or cut alcohol out completely.

09-26-13, 11:00 AM
I agree with MusiciansWish, I take Wellbutrin 300mg and have had no problems with it for over a year now. My blood pressure is fine. Every person reacts differently to medications, our chemical make ups aren't the same so the process of finding the correct medications for each of us can take time. Hang in there.