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Wellbutrin vs. Adderall

Are Adderall and Wellbutrin the Same Thing?

Wellbutrin (bupropion) and Adderall (amphetamine and dextroamphetamine salts) are used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Wellbutrin may be used off-label for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), but the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved it for this indication.

Wellbutrin is primarily used to manage major depression and seasonal affective disorder.

The Zyban brand of bupropion is used to help people stop smoking by reducing cravings and other withdrawal effects.

Adderall is also used to treat and narcolepsy.

Wellbutrin and Adderall belong to different drug classes. Wellbutrin is an aminoketone antidepressant and Adderall is an amphetamine.

Side effects of Wellbutrin and Adderall that are similar include agitation, dry mouth, insomnia, headache, nausea, vomiting, constipation, stomach pain, dizziness, vision problems or blurred vision, loss of interest in sex, tremor, changes in appetite, weight changes, strange or unpleasant taste in the mouth, or diarrhea.

Side effects of Wellbutrin that are different from Adderall include ringing in the ears, sore throat, muscle pain, itching or skin rash, increased sweating, increased urination, joint aches, or seizures (especially at higher doses).

Side effects of Adderall that are different from Wellbutrin include nervousness, restlessness, excitability, irritability, agitation, fear, anxiety, weakness, fever, hair loss, impotence, difficulty having an orgasm, increase blood pressure, increased heart rate, and heart palpitations.

Both Wellbutrin and Adderall may interact with heart or blood pressure medications, seizure medications, antidepressants, or cold or allergy medicines (antihistamines).

What Are Possible Side Effects of Wellbutrin?

Common side effects of Wellbutrin include:

  • agitation,
  • dry mouth,
  • insomnia,
  • headache,
  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • constipation,
  • stomach pain,
  • dizziness,
  • ringing in the ears,
  • vision problems or blurred vision,
  • loss of interest in sex,
  • sore throat,
  • muscle pain,
  • itching or skin rash,
  • increased sweating,
  • increased urination,
  • tremor,
  • changes in appetite,
  • weight loss or gain,
  • joint aches,
  • strange taste in the mouth,
  • diarrhea, and
  • seizures (especially at higher doses).

What Are Possible Side Effects of Adderall?

Serious side effects include:

  • slowing of growth (height and weight) in children
  • seizures, mainly in patients with a history of seizures
  • eyesight changes or blurred vision
  • Serotonin syndrome. A potentially life-threatening problem called serotonin syndrome can happen when medicines such as Adderall are taken with certain other medicines. Symptoms of serotonin syndrome may include:
    • agitation, hallucinations, coma or other changes in mental status
    • problems controlling your movements or muscle twitching
    • fast heartbeat
    • high or low blood pressure
    • sweating or fever
    • nausea or vomiting
    • diarrhea
    • muscle stiffness or tightness

Common side effects include:

  • stomach ache
  • decreased appetite
  • nervousness

Adderall may affect your or your child's ability to drive or do other dangerous activities.

Talk to your doctor if you or your child have side effects that are bothersome or do not go away.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What Is Wellbutrin?

Wellbutrin is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with a certain type of depression called major depressive disorder.

What Is Adderall?

Adderall is a central nervous system stimulant prescription medicine. It is used for the treatment of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Adderall may help increase attention and decrease impulsiveness and hyperactivity in patients with ADHD.

Adderall should be used as a part of a total treatment program for ADHD that may include counseling or other therapies.

Adderall is also used in the treatment of a sleep disorder called narcolepsy.

Adderall is a federally controlled substance (CII) because it can be abused or lead to dependence. Keep Adderall in a safe place to prevent misuse and abuse. Selling or giving away Adderall may harm others, and is against the law.

Tell your doctor if you or your child have (or have a family history of) ever abused or been dependent on alcohol, prescription medicines or street drugs.

What Drugs Interact With Wellbutrin?

Wellbutrin may interact with insulin, blood thinners, and asthma medications. Wellbutrin may also interact with many medications including heart or blood pressure medications, HIV or AIDS medications, seizure medications, other antidepressants, medicines to treat a psychiatric disorder, antibiotics, antihistamines that make you sleepy, bronchodilators, birth control pills or hormone replacement estrogens, bladder or urinary medications, diet pills, stimulants, ADHD medications, oral diabetes medication, medicines for nausea/vomiting/motion sickness, medications to treat or prevent malaria, medicines to treat Parkinson's disease, medication for restless leg syndrome, medication for pituitary gland tumor, medicines used to prevent organ transplant rejection, narcotics, numbing medicines, steroids, theophylline, or ulcer or irritable bowel medications.

What Drugs Interact With Adderall?

Tell your doctor about all of the medicines that you or your child take including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Adderall and some medicines may interact with each other and cause serious side effects.

Sometimes the doses of other medicines will need to be adjusted while taking Adderall.

Your doctor will decide whether Adderall can be taken with other medicines.

Especially tell your doctor if you or your child take:

  • anti-depression medicines including MAOIs
  • blood pressure medicines
  • seizure medicines
  • blood thinner medicines
  • cold or allergy medicines that contain decongestants
  • stomach acid medicines

Know the medicines that you or your child take. Keep a list of your medicines with you to show your doctor and pharmacist.

Do not start any new medicine while taking Adderall without talking to your doctor first.

How Should Wellbutrin Be Taken?

  • Take Wellbutrin exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not change your dose or stop taking Wellbutrin without talking with your healthcare provider first.
  • Swallow Wellbutrin tablets whole. Do not chew, cut, or crush Wellbutrin tablets.
  • Take Wellbutrin at the same time each day.
  • Take your doses of Wellbutrin at least 6 hours apart.
  • You may take Wellbutrin with or without food.
  • If you miss a dose, do not take an extra dose to make up for the dose you missed. Wait and take your next dose at the regular time. This is very important. Too much Wellbutrin can increase your chance of having a seizure.
  • If you take too much Wellbutrin, or overdose, call your local emergency room or poison control center right away.
  • Do not take any other medicines while taking Wellbutrin unless your healthcare provider has told you it is okay.
  • If you are taking Wellbutrin for the treatment of major depressive disorder, it may take several weeks for you to feel that Wellbutrin is working. Once you feel better, it is important to keep taking Wellbutrin exactly as directed by your healthcare provider. Call your healthcare provider if you do not feel Wellbutrin is working for you.

How Should Adderall Be Taken?

  • Take Adderall exactly as prescribed. Your doctor may adjust the dose until it is right for you or your child.
  • Adderall tablets are usually taken two to three times a day. The first dose is usually taken when you first wake in the morning. One or two more doses may be taken during the day, 4 to 6 hours apart.
  • Adderall can be taken with or without food.
  • From time to time, your doctor may stop Adderall treatment for a while to check ADHD symptoms.
  • Your doctor may do regular checks of the blood, heart, and blood pressure while taking Adderall. Children should have their height and weight checked often while taking Adderall. Adderall treatment may be stopped if a problem is found during these check-ups.
  • If you or your child take too much Adderall or overdoses, call your doctor or poison control center right away, or get emergency treatment.
Reviewed on 2/12/2019

References:

Wellbutrin Product Monograph.

https://www.gsksource.com

FDA. Adderall Drug Information.

https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2017/021303s032lbl.pdf

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