I was just prescribed Wellbutrin XL to help with some depression I am going through. However, no one seems to know for sure what the correct dosing of Wellbutrin XL is for renal patients. Even the specs for the drug don’t say for sure. All that I have been able to find out is that the dosage needs to be decreased for renal patients. At a normal dose, renal patients are susceptible to seizures. I certainly don’t want to have one of those since I already have a small seizure disorder.
Can anyone shed some more specific light on correctly dosing Wellbutrin XL for a renal patient?
I’m so glad to hear that you’re getting some help for your depression. As far as a dose of Wellbutrin, I emailed a pharmacist who specializes in kidney disease to get some advice for you. Here’s what I learned:
– Wellbutrin is removed from the body mostly by the kidneys.
– Dialysis does NOT remove it.
– Your MD must prescribe the dose, of course.
– Starting with a dose of 150 mg/day may be “prudent,” with adjustments as needed.
– There are no guidelines for adjusting the dose, other than to start low and work up as tolerated/needed.
It would be a good idea to stay very aware of symptoms or change that you notice after starting this drug, especially over time (in case it builds up in your body). Here’s some patient information on Wellbutrin XL from Rxlist.com, a site that has lots of info about drugs and their side effects: http://www.rxlist.com/cgi/generic/wellbutrinxl_pi.htm. Incidentally, this does say you should NOT take Wellbutrin if you have a seizure disorder. So, you may want to ask your doctor if another alternative might be better. (Doctors don’t always know about drug contraindications).
About midway through this page (scroll down) there is a chart of antidepressants that can be used in dialysis and their doses that you might want to show your doctor: http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/gec/studies/dialysis_depression.html
Do you get any regular exercise? Research has proven that exercise can help relieve mild to moderate depression, so that may work hand-in-hand with the Wellbutrin.