Wellbutrin XL Alternatives
Wellbutrin XL Alternatives: Other Depression MedicationsMany medications are available to treat depression, although none work exactly like Wellbutrin XL. These other antidepressant medications include:
- Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)
- Serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs)
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs)
- Tricyclic antidepressants
- Other miscellaneous antidepressants.
Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors
SSRIs are usually effective in treating depression and usually do not have many serious side effects. They work by increasing the level of serotonin available for the cells in the brain. These antidepressant medications include:
- Citalopram (Celexa®)
- Escitalopram (Lexapro®)
- Fluoxetine (Prozac®, Sarafem®, Selfemra™)
- Fluvoxamine (Luvox®, Luvox® CR)
- Paroxetine (Paxil®, Paxil CR®, Pexeva®, Brisdelle™)
- Sertraline (Zoloft®).
Serotonin-Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors
These antidepressants are similar to SSRIs, except that they also affect norepinephrine (another chemical in the brain). SNRIs used to treat depression include:
- Desvenlafaxine (Pristiq™)
- Duloxetine (Cymbalta®)
- Levomilnacipran (Fetzima™)
- Venlafaxine (Effexor®, Effexor XR®).
Milnacipran (Savella™) is an SNRI that is not approved for the treatment of depression (although it may be used off-label for this purpose).
Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors
Monoamine oxidase inhibitors are a class of older medications used for treating depression. There are many serious food and drug interactions with MAOIs. Because of this, they are usually used only if other medications for depression have not been effective. Medications in this class include:
- Isocarboxazid (Marplan®)
- Phenelzine (Nardil®)
- Selegiline (Eldepryl®, Emsam®, Zelapar®)
- Tranylcypromine (Parnate®).
Tricyclic antidepressants are another older class of antidepressants. Due to certain side effects, they are generally not recommended for elderly people. Medications in this class include:
- Amitriptyline (Elavil®)
- Amoxapine (Asendin®)
- Clomipramine (Anafranil®)
- Doxepin (Sinequan®, Silenor®)
- Imipramine (Tofranil®)
- Desipramine (Norpramin®)
- Nortriptyline (Pamelor®)
- Protriptyline (Vivactil®)
- Trimipramine (Surmontil®).
Other antidepressants that are available to treat depression include:
- Mirtazapine (Remeron®)
- Nefazodone (Serzone®)
- Other bupropion products, including Aplenzin™, Budeprion SR®, Budeprion XL®, Buproban®, Forfivo™ XL, Wellbutrin®, Wellbutrin SR®, and Zyban®
- Trazodone (Desyrel®) or trazodone ER (Oleptro™)
Sometimes, stimulant medications such as methylphenidate (Ritalin®) are used to treat depression when other medications have not helped, although stimulants are not approved for this use.