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Precautions and Warnings With Bupropion XL

Specific Precautions and Warnings With Bupropion XL

Warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking bupropion XL include the following:
 
  • Antidepressants (including bupropion XL) may increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior (see Depression and Suicide). Therefore, if you notice any changes in symptoms or develop new symptoms, talk to your healthcare provider immediately. Some of these symptoms may include:
 
 
  • Before prescribing bupropion XL for depression, your healthcare provider should make sure that you do not have bipolar disorder instead. Sometimes, the symptoms of bipolar disorder and depression are similar, and bupropion XL can cause problems in people with bipolar disorder.
     
  • Bupropion XL can increase the risk of seizures. Because of this, there are certain people who should not take it, including people with:
 
 
 
  • To avoid seizures, you should not take more than 450 mg of bupropion XL per day.
     
  • Bupropion XL should not be used right after a heart attack. Also, there is some evidence that the medication can cause irregular heart rhythms (arrhythmias) in people with heart disease.
     
  • Bupropion XL can cause liver damage. Also, since the liver and kidneys aid in removing the medication from the blood, you should talk to your healthcare provider before taking it if you have liver or kidney problems.
     
  • The medication can cause insomnia, agitation, hallucinations, confusion, and other mental problems, especially in people just starting treatment. Tell your healthcare provider if you are experiencing any of these problems.
     
  • Bupropion XL can cause weight loss. This can be a problem for some people, especially those who are underweight (see Wellbutrin XL and Weight Loss).
     
  • The medication can cause allergic reactions. Tell your healthcare provider if you have signs of an allergic reaction, including:
 
    • An unexplained skin rash
    • Itching
    • Hives
    • Trouble breathing
    • Unexplained swelling.
 
  • Sometimes, bupropion XL can cause high blood pressure (hypertension), especially in people using nicotine patches. Your healthcare provider should monitor your blood pressure if you are taking bupropion XL. It is not known if it causes problems in people who have heart disease or who have recently had a heart attack.

 

  • Bupropion XL has been reported to cause false positives on some amphetamine drug screening tests, even after people have stopped taking bupropion XL. 

 

  • Bupropion XL is a considered a pregnancy Category C medication. This means that it may not be safe to use during pregnancy. Talk to your healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of using the drug during pregnancy (see Wellbutrin XL and Pregnancy for more information).
     
  • Bupropion XL passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider before taking the drug (see Bupropion and Breastfeeding).
     
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Bupropion XL (Wellbutrin XL)

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