Bupropion as an Antidote for Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor-Induced Sexual Dysfunction
J Clin Psychiatry 1998;59(3):112-115
© Copyright 2014 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
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Background: Serotonin reuptake inhibiting
antidepressants (SRIs) are reported to cause sexual dysfunctions,
including reduction in desire, arousal, and orgasm. This study
evaluates the efficacy of bupropion in ameliorating sexual
dysfunctions in patients receiving SRIs.
Method: Forty-seven patients in an outpatient
psychiatric practice who complained of SRI-induced sexual
dysfunction accepted a trial of bupropion as an adjunct to their
SRI, either as a p.r.n. or as a fixed-dose scheduled medicine.
Patients received 75 mg or 150 mg of bupropion 1 to 2 hours
before sexual activity. If this was insufficient to reduce their
complaints, dose was increased gradually to 75 mg t.i.d. and
sustained for 2 weeks. This regimen was then continued if
Results: Bupropion successfully reversed a
variety of sexual dysfunctions caused by SRIs in 31 (66%) of 47
patients. Fifty-two (69%) of 75 sexual complaints improved with
bupropion treatment. The p.r.n. use of bupropion assisted 18
(38%) of 47 patients. Side effects of anxiety and tremor led to
discontinuation of bupropion in 7 (15%) of 47 patients.
Otherwise, bupropion was well tolerated.
Conclusion: Bupropion administration may be a
safe and effective method of treating SRI-induced sexual
dysfunction. Placebo-controlled, double-blind studies are needed.