Bupropion (Wellbutrin) Nursing Considerations

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Trade Name



Depression, smoking cessation, treat ADHD in adults


Not well understood, ↑ dopaminergic and noradrenergic transmission via reuptake

Therapeutic Class

Antidepressants, smoking deterrents

Pharmacologic Class


Nursing Considerations

• May lead to seizures, suicidal thoughts
• Do not administer if patient is taking MAOI
• Use caution with renal and liver impairment
• Assess mental status
• Instruct patient to avoid alcohol (may lead to hallucinations, seizures,

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Hi guys, let’s talk about bupropion, also known as Wellbutrin. This is an oral medication, as you can see here in the picture. So remember when we’re talking about the therapeutic class and the Pharmacologic class, the therapeutic class is what the drug does in the body while the pharmacologic class is the actual chemical effect. So bupropion therapeutic class is it is an antidepressant and it’s also a smoking deterrent. The pharmacologic class is an aminoketone. So how does bupropion work? Well, to be honest, it’s not very understood. So it is thought that it functions by increasing dopaminergic and non-adrenergic transmission via reuptake. Bupropion is indicated for depression, smoking cessation and also for the treatment of adult ADHD. So some common side effects of bupropion include dry mouth, a decrease in appetite, anorexia, constipation, and agitation or irritability. 

So let’s take a look at some of the nursing considerations for bupropion. You are going to want to assess your patient’s mental status. Bupropion may lead to seizures and suicidal thoughts. So that’s really important to know, do not administer to a patient who is on an MAOI. Use caution in patients with liver and renal impairment and teach your patient to avoid alcohol because it can cause hallucination seizures and even anxiety. Okay guys. So there have been more recent reports of Wellbutrin abuse because it creates a cocaine-like high. So be sure to keep this in mind when caring for patients. That is it for bupropion or Wellbutrin. Now go out and be your best self today. And as always happy nursing.

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