The People's Chemist

What They Aren’t Telling You About Wellbutrin (Bupropion)

Depression. Weight loss. Smoking. Poor libido. Lack of focus. The prescription drug bupropion, known commercially as Aplenzin, Zyban, Wellbutrin, Wellbutrin SR, and Wellbutrin XL has been marketed to cure them all…And that’s illegal because there isn’t a single study to prove such claims.

In fact, former vice-president Lauren Stevens of GlaxoSmithKline was indicted for making the illegal, unapproved statements about her drug, but was soon acquitted by a federal judge who said, “the defendant in this case should never have been prosecuted and she should be permitted to resume her career.” Meanwhile, people suffered miserably.

Bupropion was pulled off the market in 1986 by the FDA because of an unacceptable incidence of seizures, but was quickly placed back on the market later that same year to avoid any interruptions in profits. Today, bupropion is the third leading cause of drug-related seizures, with cocaine being number one. (Bupropion-related seizures can occur in patients who are taking a therapeutic dose of 450 mg/day or less.)

Between May 1998 and May 28, 2001, Health Canada and GlaxoSmithKline received 1,127 reports of adverse reactions to bupropion. Among these were 19 deaths and 172 reports of seizures or convulsions. In a single year, the Medicines Control Agency (equivalent to FDA) of Britain confirmed 18 deaths and received reports of 3,457 patients complaining of adverse reactions. The dangers associated with bupropion didn’t stop prescriptions to children. The number of children being prescribed the drug increased 195% once it was put back on the market.

The risk of bupropion risk is continually ignored by the FDA. On June 26, 2003, GlaxoSmithKline, announced that it had received an approval letter from the FDA for an extended- release formulation of bupropion that would last longer as an antidepressant!

In 2004, Health Canada issued a warning about bupropion to medical doctors. Clinical trials and postmarketing reports were shown to ignite agitation-type adverse events coupled with self-harm or harm to others. The agitation-type events included akathisia, agitation, disinhibition, emotional instability, hostility, aggression, and depersonalization. In some cases, these behaviors occurred within several weeks of starting treatment. The US never got the warning, well, until now.

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About the Author

Shane Ellison

My name is Shane “The People’s Chemist” Ellison. I hold a master’s degree in organic chemistry and am the author of Over-The-Counter Natural Cures Expanded Edition (SourceBooks). I’ve been quoted by USA Today, Shape, Woman’s World, US News and World Report, as well as Women’s Health and appeared on Fox and NBC as a medicine and health expert. Start protecting yourself and loved ones with my FREE report, The 5 Deadly Pills Checklist.

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