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  • Wellbutrin SR (bupropion) causes 6.2 percent weight loss in obese women

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
    Tuesday, January 04, 2005 7:41 am Email this article
    Wellbutrin SR (bupropion), a drug approved as an antidepressant and to help patients stop smoking, may also help with weight loss.

    This according to preliminary findings from Kishore Gadde, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Duke University Medical Center and several colleagues.

    Women given Wellbutrin SR lost 6.2% vs 1.6%

    Women eating a diet of 1600 calories per day and given Wellbutrin lost four times more weight after two months than those given a placebo (6.2 percent versus 1.6 percent, respectively).

    Subjects: 50 obese women

    The study included fifty women who were not depressed who had an average starting weight of 222 pounds and an average body mass index of 37.5.

    This is the first double-blind placebo-controlled study of Wellbutrin for weight loss.

    Larry Hobbs spoke to Dr. Gadde by phone for additional details of the study.

    Hobbs: What dose of Wellbutrin SR are you using?

    Gadde: We started with 100 mg in the morning. That was increased it to 100 mg twice a day?morning and evening? after three days, then to 200 mg in the morning and 100 mg in the evening after one week, and finally to 200 mg in the morning and 200 mg in the evening after eleven days depending on tolerance. Roughly half of the patients are taking 300 mg per day and half are taking 400 mg.

    Hobbs: What was the range of weight loss after two months?

    Gadde: The average weight loss was 6.2 percent for completers taking Wellbutrin. Sixty-seven percent of the completers taking Wellbutrin versus 12 percent taking placebo lost at least five percent of body weight during the first two months. Twenty-one percent of completers in the Wellbutrin group lost at least 8 percent compared to none in the placebo group.

    Hobbs: What side effects have you seen?

    Gadde: Dry mouth was the only side effect that was reported significantly more often in the Wellbutrin group than the placebo group. However, insomnia and nervousness also tended to be more common with Wellbutrin.

    Hobbs: When will you have longer-term data?

    Gadde: We will be presenting the six-month data at the NAASO meeting in November. There we will include data on body composition.


    New weight loss tool. Jama, 1999 Jun 23/30, 281(24):2277. Gadde KM, Logue EJ, Krishnan RR. Bupropion SR in obesity: A randomized double-blind placebo-controlled study.

    Gadde Kishore. Asst. Clinical Professor, Dept. of Psych and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical School, (919) 660-7460, personal communication.


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