Budeprion XL is approved to treat both depression and seasonal affective disorder. It alleviates the symptoms of these conditions by increasing the amount of norepinephrine and dopamine in the brain. The medication comes in tablet form, and is typically taken once a day in the morning. Potential side effects of Budeprion XL include headaches, weight loss, and insomnia.
What Is Budeprion XL?Budeprion XL® (bupropion XL) is a prescription medicine used for the treatment of depression (also known as major depression or clinical depression). It is also approved for the prevention of seasonal affective disorder (SAD). It is an extended-release version of Wellbutrin® (bupropion hydrochloride). Budeprion XL is actually a generic version of Wellbutrin XL.
(Click What Is Budeprion XL Used For? for more information, including possible off-label uses for the drug.)
Who Makes Budeprion XL?Budeprion XL is manufactured by Impax Laboratories for Teva Pharmaceuticals.
How Does Budeprion XL Work?Budeprion XL is a norepinephrine and dopamine reuptake inhibitor, or NDRI for short. NDRIs, such as Budeprion XL, affect specific chemicals within the brain known as norepinephrine and dopamine. These are two of several chemicals used to send messages from one nerve cell to another.
As a message travels down a nerve, it causes the end of the cell to release norepinephrine or dopamine. The chemical enters the gap between the first nerve cell and the one next to it. When enough norepinephrine or dopamine reaches the second nerve cell, it activates receptors on the cell, and the message continues on its way. The first cell then quickly absorbs any norepinephrine or dopamine that remains in the gap between the cells. This is called "reuptake."
Normally, this process works without any problems. But when the levels of dopamine and norepinephrine become unbalanced, it can cause a variety of conditions, including depression and seasonal affective disorder. Budeprion XL helps to block the reuptake of norepinephrine and dopamine so that more remains in the space between the brain's nerve cells. This gives the chemicals a better chance of activating the receptors on the next nerve cell.
Currently, the only NDRI antidepressants approved for use are medications containing bupropion. Budeprion XL is the longest-acting version of bupropion, taken just once a day. Bupropion also comes in several other forms, including:
- Wellbutrin® (bupropion hydrochloride), a short-acting version
- Wellbutrin SR® (bupropion SR) or Budeprion SR®, a sustained-release version (taken twice a day)
- Wellbutrin XL® (bupropion XL), the brand-name version of Budeprion XL
- Aplenzin™ (bupropion hydrobromide), another once-daily version
- Zyban® (bupropion SR) or Buproban®, a sustained-release version used for smoking cessation.