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What is Wellbutrin medication?

WELLBUTRIN (bupropion) is an antidepressant of the aminoketone class, and is used to treat major depressive disorder and seasonal affective disorder. Bupropion is a good antidepressant particularly popular because it can be administered in the cases of incomplete response to a SSRI antidepressant from first-line.

Initially designed and sold as an antidepressant, bupropion is now also succesfully used to help smokers to stop smoking. At least one brand of bupropion, Zyban, helps people stop smoking. It reduces cravings and other withdrawal effects.

A short history of Wellbutrin

Bupropion was dicovered by Nariman Mehta (GlaxoSmithKline employee) in 1969 and was patented in 1974. It was granted by FDA as an antidepressant in 1985. Since the begining, it was sold as Wellbutrin. In 1986, the seizures problem was put, but these were spotted to be dose-dependent so bupropion was re-introduced in pharmacies in 1989.

The FDA approved in 1996 Wellbutrin SR, the sustained-release bupropion formula. This is recommended to be taken twice a day, unlike the immediate-release Wellbutrin which has to be taken 3 times/day. FDA approved in 2003 Wellbutrin XL, another formula that can be taken only once per day.

In 2007 it was the fourth-most prescribed antidepressant in the U.S. retail market, with 20.184 million retail prescriptions.