Bupropion Side Effects: Can Wellbutrin Cause Anxiety?

Last Updated: June 3, 2020

Authored by Dr. Ahmed Zayed

Wellbutrin is common depression treatment medication among individuals who require an antidepressant to cope with mental health issues. While the medication is popular, Wellbutrin side-effects can sometimes be serious. Understanding the side effects of Bupropion XL and other varieties of the drugs can help a patient better understand what to expect, as well as ensure the person knows when they should contact their doctor or seek medical assistance. Take a closer look at Bupropion HCL side effects and consider how to manage them.

Common Wellbutrin Side Effects

Some Bupropion XL side effects associated with other types of this particular antidepressant medication are more common than others. The most common side-effects related to Wellbutrin is usually considered not significantly harmful. Some people may find that these group of side-effects go away as their body starts to get used to bupropion, as it happens with Wellbutrin and hair loss, for instance. Below is a list of common Wellbutrin side-effects that patients are advised to be aware of when they are planning to start using this drug to assist in the treatment of their depression symptoms.
Common side effects associated with the use of bupropion are:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Migraine
  • Rash
  • Confusion
  • Tachycardia
  • Excessive sweating
  • Agitation

Anxiety

Even though bupropion has been developed to assist with depression, some people have noted Wellbutrin anxiety side-effects. For those asking if Wellbutrin cause anxiety, it is important to note that some individuals have pointed out changes in their mood and other mental-related factors. Individuals with existing anxiety may sometimes find that their symptoms are elevated. This may happen due to Wellbutrin interactions; thus taking a closer look at other types of medication that is also being used can be a way of possibly pinning down the cause.
It should be noted here that some individuals have also recorded other types of mental problems, such as Wellbutrin memory loss side-effects. In some cases, anxiety and related mental symptoms may also be a symptom of Bupropion withdrawal, if the patient recently decided to stop using the medication after they relied on it for an extended period.

anxiety in adult woman caused by wellbutrin

Insomnia

Wellbutrin insomnia is another potential side-effect that a lot of people experience when they use the drug. While it does seem to get better after a while, experiencing sleep loss during the initial period when the use of the medication is only initiated can be unpleasant for a patient.

Headache

When it comes to asking what the side effects of Wellbutrin are, headache is one of those that are not always included in these lists. Yet, some people experience a headache while they are using bupropion.

Wellbutrin Constipation

Certain gastrointestinal problems may also occur among individuals who are using this particular drug to treat their depressive symptoms. Wellbutrin constipation side-effects may also be accompanied by other adverse effects in some individuals. For example, abdominal pain has been reported by some people who have been prescribed Bupropion overdose in the past. Similar to many of the other common Wellbutrin side-effects, those individuals who do become constipated while they use bupropion antidepressant will usually find that it improves within a few days to a couple of weeks.

woman with with constipation problem from wellbutrin

Nausea

Wellbutrin nausea is another potential side-effect that patients should be aware of. Nausea does not affect a majority of people who are using the drug but is still one of the possible Wellbutrin side-effects that happens in some individuals. In some cases, nausea may also be accompanied by vomiting, although this is less common than only becoming nauseous while using the drug. In most cases, nausea should also start to improve as the patient’s body becomes used to the alterations that the medicine causes to their neurotransmitters.

Tremors

Wellbutrin tremors are also possible, and while it does not affect every single person that uses the medication. Tremor can be an exceptionally unpleasant Wellbutrin side-effect to experience. Wellbutrin drug class is known for the effects to cause the patient’s body to shake uncontrollably. Hands are often affected by tremors, which affects the person’s ability to conduct their day-to-day activities. The issue tends to improve in time.

Tinnitus

Tinnitus refers to a ringing sound that is sometimes experienced, without any similar sound is present in the real world. In some people, this is a medical condition, but in this case, Wellbutrin tinnitus is a side-effect.

Weight Changes

Another potential side effect of Wellbutrin SR that many people tend to notice changes in their weight while they are using bupropion. This particular adverse effect does not affect everyone in the same way. Bupropion weight loss occurs in some people who use the drug. In some people, however, Bupropion side effects may rather cause the person to experience weight gain instead.

woman experiencing weight loss

Sexual Wellbutrin Side Effects

There are also certain adverse effects that may occur relating to a patient’s sexual health and performance. For example, in some people, Wellbutrin hypersexuality side effects can occur. This may cause the person to experience an increase in their libido. It is, however, more common for an individual to experience a loss of their sex drive while they are using antidepressants, especially during the early stages.

Severe Side Effects Of Wellbutrin

As part of this guide on Wellbutrin XL side effects, it is important also to consider the fact that in some cases, more serious adverse reactions may occur. In these cases, it is usually advised that the patient contacts their doctor or visits an emergency room for medical assistance.
Some of the serious side effects of Wellbutrin are listed below:

  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Hypertension
  • Seizures
  • Psychosis
  • Angle-closure glaucoma

Seizures

Whether using Wellbutrin for ADHD or depression, the seizure is a possibility that does affect some people. While rare, this is a severe Wellbutrin side-effect, and the person would usually be advised to stop using the medication if this type of event occurs.

Mood And Behavior Changes

Certain changes to a person’s behavior and mood are also considered serious. For example, while agitation during the initiation period sometimes occur, when Wellbutrin side effects anger occur, along with sudden changes in how the person behaves, then the individual’s doctor should be contacted. While this may, in some rare cases, be a sign of a Bupropion overdose, it can also be a case where the person’s body does not react well with the active ingredients in bupropion.

Vision Changes

When bupropion affects the vision of the patient, then it is also considered a serious complication of the medication. Issues such as sudden blurry vision should be reported to the prescribing physician to ensure appropriate action can be taken.

blurred vision exprerienced from bupropion

Cardiovascular Wellbutrin Side Effects

There are certain side effects of Bupropion that may affect the cardiovascular system as well. Wellbutrin blood pressure effects may be noted, for example. There may be an increase in the person’s blood pressure levels. When heart palpitations are experienced, however, it is generally advised that the patient discusses this particular adverse event with their doctor.

Managing Bupropion Side Effects

Managing the side effects of Wellbutrin SR depends on a few factors, such as:

  • dosage prescribed to a person
  • particular reason why they have been provided with this medication.

Wellbutrin-alcohol interactions need to be understood by individuals using the drug. When alcohol is used with the medication, then severe Wellbutrin side effects are more likely to occur. Limiting or eliminating alcohol is always a good idea.
When using this particular medication, a person should ensure they are not taking other pills that may have interaction, as this can also lead to an increased risk of Wellbutrin side effects.


Page Sources

  1. Ng QX, A Systematic Review of the Use of Bupropion for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder in Children and Adolescents, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27813651
  2. Yasin W, Ahmed SI, Gouthro RV, Does Bupropion Impact More than Mood? A Case Report and Review of the Literature, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31157138
  3. Matyjaszek-Matuszek B, Szafraniec A, Porada D., Pharmacotherapy of obesity - state of the art., https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30209803

Published on: July 5th, 2019

Updated on: June 3rd, 2020

About Author

Dr. Ahmed Zayed

Dr. Ahmed Zayed is a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery. He is graduated from the University of Alexandria, Egypt. Dr. Ahmed Zayed has a passion for writing medical and health care articles and focuses on providing engaging and trustworthy information to readers.

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  • Christine Baker
    I’m addicted to Wellbutrin. I don’t know how to stop snorting it. I have been addicted for two years.