Wellbutrin XL (Bupropion Hydrochloride XL) and/or alternatives
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General Information On Wellburtin XL
Wellbutrin XL is used to treat depression. Depression is caused by an imbalance of neurotransmitters secreted by the brain. This imbalance in neurotransmitters causes mood swings in people and can lead to suicidal tendencies. The generic name of the drug is Bupropion. Wellbutrin XL is long acting and the patient is required to take only one dose daily.
Depression, if not treated in time, can become a serious mental disorder. It can disrupt the lives of the patient and those around him or her. Bupropion is an antidepressant that is taken to deal with depression and mood disorders.
Side Effects for Wellbutrin XL
Almost all drugs have some side effects. However, drugs are prescribed when doctors feel their benefits far outweigh the disadvantages. Some common side effects of Wellburtin XL include headache, nausea, constipation, dry mouth, insomnia, sore throat, vomiting, stomach pain, flushing, joint aches, dizziness, etc. These generally require no treatment, and most patients feel better and experience these side effects to a lesser extent or not at all after some time on the medication.
In certain cases, some people may face severe reactions such as chest pain, palpitations, fainting, anxiety, confusion, hallucinations, tremors, etc. The best recourse in such cases is to report the side effects to your physician and seek medical attention as is necessary. Severe allergic reactions are not common among patients using Wellburtin XL. However, if it does occur, then be sure to notify the doctor immediately.
Inform your doctor about your previous medical history. Your doctor should know about any alcohol dependence, head trauma, diabetes, high blood pressure, brain tumor, liver problems, etc. you have suffered from. In case you have a family history of psychiatric disorders, then the doctor should be informed so that he or she can decide on a course of action adequately. Do not take the drug if you have any eating disorders such as anorexia or bulimia.
Wellburtin XL is an antidepressant that can have a very positive influence in the patient. However, in certain cases, it has been found that the patient goes through even worse depression. If you are taking this drug for reasons other than depression, you must ask your doctor about the possible outcomes.
Wellburtin XL Dosage
Depending on the patients needs, the dosage of the drug is to be increased gradually from Wellburtin XL 150 mg to Wellburtin XL 300 mg and finally to Wellburtin XL 450 mg. This should be the maximum dosage. Your doctor will determine the best dosage for you based on your response to the medication. The drug is to be taken once daily. You can have it with or without food. Always stick to the dosage regimen prescribed by your doctor. Any kind of overdose can be risky. As the drug can cause sleeplessness, it is better not to take it before bedtime.
A number of drugs interact with Wellburtin XL. These include diabetes medications, nicotine products, sedatives, stimulants, alcohol, other antidepressants, steroids, anti-seizure drugs, anti-platelet drugs, etc. A serious drug interaction can occur if you are taking MAO inhibitors such as Linezolid, Rasagiline, Phenelzine, etc. Consult your doctor before you buy Wellburtin XL.
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What is a "Generic" medication/drug?
Generic drugs are medications that have comparable medicinal ingredients as the original brand name drug, but which are generally cheaper in price. Nearly 1 in 3 drugs dispensed are "generic". They undergo testing to ensure that they are similar to their "brand" counterparts in:
- Active Ingredient (e.g. "Pravastatin" is the active ingredient in brand name Pravachol)
- Dosage (e.g. 10 mg of the active ingredient)
- Safety (e.g. same or similar side effects, drug interactions)
- Performance (e.g. 10 mg of a "generic" can be substituted for 10 mg of the "brand" and have the same therapeutic result)
- Intended use (e.g. both "generic" and "brand" would be prescribed for the same conditions)
What this means is that "generic" medications can be used as a substitute of their brand equivalents with the comparable therapeutic results. There are a few exceptions (examples are outlined at the end of this page) and as always you should consult your physician before switching from a brand name medications to a generic or vice versa.
What differences are there between generic and brand?
While generics and brand equivalent drugs contain the same active ingredients, they may be different in the following ways:
- Appearance (e.g. the scoring or markings)
The color, shape and size of the medication come from the fillers that are added to the active ingredients to make the drug. These fillers that are added to the drug have no medical use and do not to change the effectiveness of the final product. A generic drug must contain comparable active ingredients and must have a comparable strength and dosage as the original brand name equivalent. Generic drugs can be more cost effective than purchasing the brand name.
Why do generics cost less than the brand name equivalents?
When a new drug is "invented", the company that discovered it has a patent on it that gives them the exclusive production rights for this medication. Once the patent expires in a country, other companies can bring the product to market under their own name. This patent prevents other companies from copying the drug during that time so they can earn back their Research and Development costs through being the exclusive supplier of the product. After the patent expires however, other companies can develop a "generic" version of the product. These versions generally are offered at much lower prices because the companies do not have the same development costs as the original company who developed the medication.
The main thing to realize here though is that the two products are therapeutically equivalent. They may look different, and be called something different.
How are Generic drugs tested to ensure quality and efficacy?
Generally speaking, the two most generally accepted methods to prove the safety of a generic version of a drug are to either repeat most of the chemistry, animal and human studies originally done, or to show that the drug performs comparably with the original brand name drug. This second option is called a "comparative bioavailability" study. During this type of study, volunteers are given the original drug, and then separately later the generic drug. The rates at which the drug is delivered to the patient (into their blood stream or otherwise absorbed) are measured to ensure they are the same. Because the same active ingredient is used the major concern is just that it delivers the common chemical(s) at the same rate so that they have the same effect. Please note that the methods that the manufacturers use may vary from country to country.