What is bupropion for bipolar disorder?

Even though antidepressants are effective for treating depression, their use in people with bipolar disorder can increase the risk of phase shifting from depression to mania. Most antidepressants increase serotonin or noradrenaline; in contrast, bupropion has unique pharmacokinetics as a norepinephrine-dopamine reuptake inhibitor. Therefore, it has been suggested that bupropion may have benefits for depression with less risk of phase shifting than other antidepressants.

What is the evidence for bupropion as treatment for bipolar disorder?

Moderate to low quality evidence suggests a large effect of greater improvement in depression scores with bupropion than with placebo. There were no differences between bupropion and other antidepressants for depression or phase-shifting.

November 2021

Image: © molekuul.be – stock.adobe.com

Last updated at: 1:58 pm, 15th February 2022
To view documentation related to this topic download the files below
Fact Sheet Technical Commentary

NeuRA Libraries

Title Colour Legend:
Green - Topic summary is available.
Orange - Topic summary is being compiled.
Red - Topic summary has no current systematic review available.