WELLBUTRIN — bupropion hydrochloride tablet, film coated
Boxed Warning section
SUICIDALITY AND ANTIDEPRESSANT DRUGS
Antidepressants increased the risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior in children, adolescents, and young adults in short-term trials. These trials did not show an increase in the risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior with antidepressant use in subjects over age 24; there was a reduction in risk with antidepressant use in subjects aged 65 and older [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].
In patients of all ages who are started on antidepressant therapy, monitor closely for worsening, and for emergence of suicidal thoughts and behaviors. Advise families and caregivers of the need for close observation and communication with the prescriber [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].
NEUROPSYCHIATRIC REACTIONS IN PATIENTS TAKING BUPROPION FOR SMOKING CESSATION
Serious neuropsychiatric reactions have occurred in patients taking bupropion for smoking cessation [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)]. The majority of these reactions occurred during bupropion treatment, but some occurred in the context of discontinuing treatment. In many cases, a causal relationship to bupropion treatment is not certain, because depressed mood may be a symptom of nicotine withdrawal. However, some of the cases occurred in patients taking bupropion who continued to smoke. Although WELLBUTRIN® is not approved for smoking cessation, observe all patients for neuropsychiatric reactions. Instruct the patient to contact a healthcare provider if such reactions occur [seeWarnings and Precautions (5.2)].
INDICATIONS & USAGE
WELLBUTRIN (bupropion hydrochloride)is indicated for the treatment of major depressive disorder(MDD), as defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM).
The efficacy of WELLBUTRIN in the treatment of a major depressive episode was established in two 4-week controlled inpatient trials and one 6-week controlled outpatient trial of adult subjects with MDD [see Clinical Studies (14)].
•Starting dose: 200 mg per day given as 100 mg twice daily (2.1)•General: Increase dose gradually to reduce seizure risk. (2.1, 5.3)•After 3 days, may increase the dose to 300 mg per day, given as 100 mg 3 times daily at an interval of at least 6 hours between doses. (2.1) •Usual target dose: 300 mg per day as 100 mg 3 times daily. (2.1) •Maximum dose: 450 mg per day given as 150 mg 3 times daily. (2.1) •Periodically reassess the dose and need for maintenance treatment. (2.1)•Moderate to severe hepatic impairment: 75 mg once daily. (2.2, 8.7) •Mild hepatic impairment: Consider reducing the dose and/or frequency of dosing. (2.2, 8.7)•Renal impairment: Consider reducing the dose and/or frequency. (2.3, 8.6)
To minimize the risk of seizure, increase the dose gradually [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)]. Increases in dose should not exceed 100 mg per day in a 3‑day period. WELLBUTRIN Tablets should be swallowed whole and not crushed, divided, or chewed. WELLBUTRIN may be taken with or without food.
The recommended starting dose is 200 mg per day, given as 100 mg twice daily. After 3 days of dosing, the dose may be increased to 300 mg per day, given as 100 mg 3 times daily, with at least 6 hours between successive doses. Dosing above 300 mg per day may be accomplished using the 75- or 100-mg tablets.
A maximum of 450 mg per day, given in divided doses of not more than 150 mg each, may be considered for patients who show no clinical improvement after several weeks of treatment at 300 mg per day. Administer the 100‑mg tablet 4 times daily to not exceed the limit of 150 mg in a single dose.
It is generally agreed that acute episodes of depression require several months or longer of antidepressant drug treatment beyond the response in the acute episode. It is unknown whether the dose of WELLBUTRIN needed for maintenance treatment is identical to the dose that provided an initial response. Periodically reassess the need for maintenance treatment and the appropriate dose for such treatment.
In patients with moderate to severe hepatic impairment (Child-Pugh score: 7 to 15), the maximum dose of WELLBUTRIN is 75 mg per day. In patients with mild hepatic impairment (Child-Pugh score: 5 to 6), consider reducing the dose and/or frequency of dosing [see Use in Specific Populations (8.7), Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].
Consider reducing the dose and/or frequency of WELLBUTRIN in patients with renal impairment (Glomerular Filtration Rate <90 mL/min) [see Use in Specific Populations (8.6), Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].
At least 14 days should elapse between discontinuation of an MAOI intended to treat depression and initiation of therapy with WELLBUTRIN. Conversely, at least 14 days should be allowed after stopping WELLBUTRIN before starting an MAOI antidepressant [see Contraindications (4), Drug Interactions (7.6)].
Do not start WELLBUTRIN in a patient who is being treated with a reversible MAOI such as linezolid or intravenous methylene blue. Drug interactions can increase the risk of hypertensive reactions. In a patient who requires more urgent treatment of a psychiatric condition, non-pharmacological interventions, including hospitalization, should be considered [see Contraindications (4), Drug Interactions (7.6)].
In some cases, a patient already receiving therapy with WELLBUTRIN may require urgent treatment with linezolid or intravenous methylene blue. If acceptable alternatives to linezolid or intravenous methylene blue treatment are not available and the potential benefits of linezolid or intravenous methylene blue treatment are judged to outweigh the risks of hypertensive reactions in a particular patient, WELLBUTRIN should be stopped promptly, and linezolid or intravenous methylene blue can be administered. The patient should be monitored for 2 weeks or until 24 hours after the last dose of linezolid or intravenous methylene blue, whichever comes first. Therapy with WELLBUTRIN may be resumed 24 hours after the last dose of linezolid or intravenous methylene blue.
The risk of administering methylene blue by non-intravenous routes (such as oral tablets or by local injection) or in intravenous doses much lower than 1 mg/kg with WELLBUTRIN is unclear. The clinician should, nevertheless, be aware of the possibility of a drug interaction with such use [see Contraindications (4), Drug Interactions (7.6)].
•75 mg – yellow‑gold, round, biconvex tablets printed with “WELLBUTRIN 75”. •100 mg – red, round, biconvex tablets printed with “WELLBUTRIN 100”.
•WELLBUTRIN is contraindicated in patients with a seizure disorder.•WELLBUTRIN is contraindicated in patients with a current or prior diagnosis of bulimia or anorexia nervosa as a higher incidence of seizures was observed in such patients treated with WELLBUTRIN
[see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)]
.•WELLBUTRIN is contraindicated in patients undergoing abrupt discontinuation of alcohol, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and antiepileptic drugs
[see Warnings and Precautions (5.3), Drug Interactions (7.3)]
.•The use of MAOIs (intended to treat psychiatric disorders) concomitantly with WELLBUTRIN or within 14 days of discontinuing treatment with WELLBUTRIN is contraindicated. There is an increased risk of hypertensive reactions when WELLBUTRIN is used concomitantly with MAOIs. The use of WELLBUTRIN within 14 days of discontinuing treatment with an MAOI is also contraindicated. Starting WELLBUTRIN in a patient treated with reversible MAOIs such as linezolid or intravenous methylene blue is contraindicated
[see Dosage and Administration (2.4, 2.5), Warnings and Precautions (5.4), Drug Interactions (7.6)]
.•WELLBUTRIN is contraindicated in patients with known hypersensitivity to bupropion or other ingredients of WELLBUTRIN. Anaphylactoid/anaphylactic reactions and Stevens-Johnson syndrome have been reported
[see Warnings and Precautions (5.8)].
•Seizure risk: The risk is dose-related. Can minimize risk by gradually increasing the dose and limiting daily dose to 450 mg. Discontinue if seizure occurs. (4, 5.3, 7.3) •Hypertension: WELLBUTRIN can increase blood pressure. Monitor blood pressure before initiating treatment and periodically during treatment. (5.4)•Activation of mania/hypomania: Screen patients for bipolar disorder and monitor for these symptoms. (5.5)•Psychosis and other neuropsychiatric reactions: Instruct patients to contact a healthcare professional if such reactions occur. (5.6)•Angle-closure glaucoma: Angle-closure glaucoma has occurred in patients with untreated anatomically narrow angles treated with antidepressants. (5.7)
Patients with MDD, both adult and pediatric, may experience worsening of their depression and/or the emergence of suicidal ideation and behavior (suicidality) or unusual changes in behavior, whether or not they are taking antidepressant medications, and this risk may persist until significant remission occurs. Suicide is a known risk of depression and certain other psychiatric disorders, and these disorders themselves are the strongest predictors of suicide. There has been a long-standing concern that antidepressants may have a role in inducing worsening of depression and the emergence of suicidality in certain patients during the early phases of treatment.
Pooled analyses of short‑term placebo‑controlled trials of antidepressant drugs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors [SSRIs] and others) show that these drugs increase the risk of suicidal thinking and behavior (suicidality) in children, adolescents, and young adults (ages 18 to 24) with MDD and other psychiatric disorders. Short-term clinical trials did not show an increase in the risk of suicidality with antidepressants compared with placebo in adults beyond age 24; there was a reduction with antidepressants compared with placebo in adults aged 65 and older.
The pooled analyses of placebo-controlled trials in children and adolescents with MDD, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), or other psychiatric disorders included a total of 24 short‑term trials of 9 antidepressant drugs in over 4,400 subjects. The pooled analyses of placebo‑controlled trials in adults with MDD or other psychiatric disorders included a total of 295 short‑term trials (median duration of 2 months) of 11 antidepressant drugs in over 77,000 subjects. There was considerable variation in risk of suicidality among drugs, but a tendency toward an increase in the younger subjects for almost all drugs studied. There were differences in absolute risk of suicidality across the different indications, with the highest incidence in MDD. The risk differences (drug vs. placebo), however, were relatively stable within age strata and across indications. These risk differences (drug-placebo difference in the number of cases of suicidality per 1,000 subjects treated) are provided in Table 1.
Drug-Placebo Difference in Number of Cases of Suicidality per 1,000 Subjects Treated
Increases Compared With Placebo
14 additional cases
5 additional cases
Decreases Compared With Placebo
1 fewer case
6 fewer cases
No suicides occurred in any of the pediatric trials. There were suicides in the adult trials, but the number was not sufficient to reach any conclusion about drug effect on suicide.
It is unknown whether the suicidality risk extends to longer-term use, i.e., beyond several months. However, there is substantial evidence from placebo-controlled maintenance trials in adults with depression that the use of antidepressants can delay the recurrence of depression.
All patients being treated with antidepressants for any indication should be monitored appropriately and observed closely for clinical worsening, suicidality, and unusual changes in behavior, especially during the initial few months of a course of drug therapy, or at times of dose changes, either increases or decreases [see Boxed Warning].
The following symptoms, anxiety, agitation, panic attacks, insomnia, irritability, hostility, aggressiveness, impulsivity, akathisia (psychomotor restlessness), hypomania, and mania, have been reported in adult and pediatric patients being treated with antidepressants for major depressive disorder as well as for other indications, both psychiatric and nonpsychiatric. Although a causal link between the emergence of such symptoms and either the worsening of depression and/or the emergence of suicidal impulses has not been established, there is concern that such symptoms may represent precursors to emerging suicidality.
Consideration should be given to changing the therapeutic regimen, including possibly discontinuing the medication, in patients whose depression is persistently worse, or who are experiencing emergent suicidality or symptoms that might be precursors to worsening depression or suicidality, especially if these symptoms are severe, abrupt in onset, or were not part of the patient’s presenting symptoms.
Families and caregivers of patients being treated with antidepressants for MDD or other indications, both psychiatric and nonpsychiatric, should be alerted about the need to monitor patients for the emergence of agitation, irritability, unusual changes in behavior, and the other symptoms described above, as well as the emergence of suicidality, and to report such symptoms immediately to healthcare providers. Such monitoring should include daily observation by families and caregivers. Prescriptions for WELLBUTRIN should be written for the smallest quantity of tablets consistent with good patient management, in order to reduce the risk of overdose.
WELLBUTRIN is not approved for smoking cessation treatment; however, bupropion HCl sustained-release is approved for this use. Serious neuropsychiatric symptoms have been reported in patients taking bupropion for smoking cessation. These have included changes in mood (including depression and mania), psychosis, hallucinations, paranoia, delusions, homicidal ideation, hostility, agitation, aggression, anxiety, and panic, as well as suicidal ideation, suicide attempt, and completed suicide [see Boxed Warning, Adverse Reactions (6.2)]. Observe patients for the occurrence of neuropsychiatric reactions. Instruct patients to contact a healthcare professional if such reactions occur.
In many of these cases, a causal relationship to bupropion treatment is not certain, because depressed mood can be a symptom of nicotine withdrawal. However, some of the cases occurred in patients taking bupropion who continued to smoke.
WELLBUTRIN can cause seizure. The risk of seizure is dose-related. The dose should not exceed 450 mg per day. Increase the dose gradually. Discontinue WELLBUTRIN and do not restart treatment if the patient experiences a seizure.
The risk of seizures is also related to patient factors, clinical situations, and concomitant medications that lower the seizure threshold. Consider these risks before initiating treatment with WELLBUTRIN. WELLBUTRIN is contraindicated in patients with a seizure disorder, current or prior diagnosis of anorexia nervosa or bulimia, or undergoing abrupt discontinuation of alcohol, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and antiepileptic drugs [see Contraindications (4), Drug Interactions (7.3)]. The following conditions can also increase the risk of seizure: severe head injury; arteriovenous malformation; CNS tumor or CNS infection; severe stroke; concomitant use of other medications that lower the seizure threshold (e.g., other bupropion products, antipsychotics, tricyclic antidepressants, theophylline, and systemic corticosteroids); metabolic disorders (e.g., hypoglycemia, hyponatremia, severe hepatic impairment, and hypoxia); use of illicit drugs (e.g., cocaine); or abuse or misuse of prescription drugs such as CNS stimulants. Additional predisposing conditions include diabetes mellitus treated with oral hypoglycemic drugs or insulin; use of anorectic drugs; and excessive use of alcohol, benzodiazepines, sedative/hypnotics, or opiates.
Incidence of Seizure With Bupropion Use: Bupropion is associated with seizures in approximately 0.4% (4/1,000) of patients treated at doses up to 450 mg per day. The estimated seizure incidence for WELLBUTRIN increases almost 10-fold between 450 and 600 mg per day.
The risk of seizure can be reduced if the dose of WELLBUTRIN does not exceed 450 mg per day, given as 150 mg 3 times daily, and the titration rate is gradual.
Treatment with WELLBUTRIN can result in elevated blood pressure and hypertension. Assess blood pressure before initiating treatment with WELLBUTRIN, and monitor periodically during treatment. The risk of hypertension is increased if WELLBUTRIN is used concomitantly with MAOIs or other drugs that increase dopaminergic or noradrenergic activity [see Contraindications (4)].
Data from a comparative trial of the sustained-release formulation of bupropion HCl, nicotine transdermal system (NTS), the combination of sustained-release bupropion plus NTS, and placebo as an aid to smoking cessation suggest a higher incidence of treatment-emergent hypertension in patients treated with the combination of sustained-release bupropion and NTS. In this trial, 6.1% of subjects treated with the combination of sustained-release bupropion and NTS had treatment‑emergent hypertension compared to 2.5%, 1.6%, and 3.1% of subjects treated with sustained-release bupropion, NTS, and placebo, respectively. The majority of these subjects had evidence of pre-existing hypertension. Three subjects (1.2%) treated with the combination of sustained-release bupropion and NTS and 1 subject (0.4%) treated with NTS had study medication discontinued due to hypertension compared with none of the subjects treated with sustained-release bupropion or placebo. Monitoring of blood pressure is recommended in patients who receive the combination of bupropion and nicotine replacement.
In a clinical trial of bupropion immediate-release in MDD subjects with stable congestive heart failure (N = 36), bupropion was associated with an exacerbation of pre-existing hypertension in 2 subjects, leading to discontinuation of bupropion treatment. There are no controlled trials assessing the safety of bupropion in patients with a recent history of myocardial infarction or unstable cardiac disease.
Antidepressant treatment can precipitate a manic, mixed, or hypomanic manic episode. The risk appears to be increased in patients with bipolar disorder or who have risk factors for bipolar disorder. Prior to initiating WELLBUTRIN, screen patients for a history of bipolar disorder and the presence of risk factors for bipolar disorder (e.g., family history of bipolar disorder, suicide, or depression). WELLBUTRIN is not approved for use in treating bipolar depression.
Depressed patients treated with WELLBUTRIN have had a variety of neuropsychiatric signs and symptoms, including delusions, hallucinations, psychosis, concentration disturbance, paranoia, and confusion. Some of these patients had a diagnosis of bipolar disorder. In some cases, these symptoms abated upon dose reduction and/or withdrawal of treatment. Instruct patients to contact a healthcare professional if such reactions occur.
The pupillary dilation that occurs following use of many antidepressant drugs including WELLBUTRIN may trigger an angle-closure attack in a patient with anatomically narrow angles who does not have a patent iridectomy.
Anaphylactoid/anaphylactic reactions have occurred during clinical trials with bupropion. Reactions have been characterized by pruritus, urticaria, angioedema, and dyspnea requiring medical treatment. In addition, there have been rare, spontaneous postmarketing reports of erythema multiforme, Stevens‑Johnson syndrome, and anaphylactic shock associated with bupropion. Instruct patients to discontinue WELLBUTRIN and consult a healthcare provider if they develop an allergic or anaphylactoid/anaphylactic reaction (e.g., skin rash, pruritus, hives, chest pain, edema, and shortness of breath) during treatment.
There are reports of arthralgia, myalgia, fever with rash and other serum sickness-like symptoms suggestive of delayed hypersensitivity.
All MedLibrary.org resources are included in as near-original form as possible, meaning that the information from the original provider has been rendered here with only typographical or stylistic modifications and not with any substantive alterations of content, meaning or intent.