Bupropion for smoking cessation

by / Friday, 04 June 2010 / Published in Uncategorized

I just received a question via email about using Buproprion as an aid for smoking cessation, so I thought I would put up a bit of information regarding using Buproprion for helping your patients with their smoking.

Bupropion is the generic name for the medications Wellbutrin and Zyban.  Bupropion is FDA approved and is used as an anti-depressant(Wellbutrin) and for smoking cessation(Zyban).  The drug acts as a norepinephrine and dopamine reuptake inhibitor.  

One of the benefits of using Zyban is that it has been shown to prevent the weight gain that is often associated with the cessation of smoking.

Treatment lasts between 7-12 weeks, and it is important to note that nicotine cessation should commence at around 10 days into treatment.

Verinicline(Chantix) has been shown to be a superior aid in smoking cessation, as those who use Chantix report a 23% success rate after 1 year as opposed to those using Zyban, who report a 15% success rate at the 1 year mark.

It is important to note that Bupropion doubles the chances of quitting successfully after 3 months of treatment, which must be used in conjunction with nicotine replacement and counselling.  

Caution when using Bupropion:  It lowers the seizure threshold, so be careful to ask the patient if they have a history of seizures or a seizure disorder.

That should cover everything you’ll need to know to answer any questions about Bupropion for smoking cessation on the Step 2 CK exam.

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