Bupropion Hydrochloride: Package Insert and Label Information

BUPROPION HYDROCHLORIDE- bupropion hydrochloride tablet
NCS HealthCare of KY, Inc dba Vangard Labs

WARNING: SUICIDAL THOUGHTS AND BEHAVIORS

SUICIDALITY AND ANTIDEPRESSANT DRUGS

Antidepressants increased the risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior in children, adolescents, and young adults in short-term trials. These trials did not show an increase in the risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior with antidepressant use in subjects over age 24; there was a reduction in risk with antidepressant use in subjects aged 65 and older [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].

In patients of all ages who are started on antidepressant therapy, monitor closely for worsening, and for emergence of suicidal thoughts and behaviors. Advise families and caregivers of the need for close observation and communication with the prescriber [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].

1 INDICATIONS AND USAGE

Bupropion hydrochloride tablets are indicated for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD), as defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM).

The efficacy of bupropion hydrochloride tablets in the treatment of a major depressive episode was established in two 4-week controlled inpatient trials and one 6-week controlled outpatient trial of adult subjects with MDD [see Clinical Studies (14)].

2 DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION

2.1 General Instructions for Use

To minimize the risk of seizure, increase the dose gradually [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)]. Increases in dose should not exceed 100 mg/day in a 3-day period. Bupropion hydrochloride tablets should be swallowed whole and not crushed, divided, or chewed. Bupropion hydrochloride tablets may be taken with or without food.

The recommended starting dose is 200 mg/day, given as 100 mg twice daily. After 3 days of dosing, the dose may be increased to 300 mg/day, given as 100 mg 3 times daily, with at least 6 hours between successive doses. Dosing above 300 mg/day may be accomplished using the 75 mg or 100 mg tablets.

A maximum of 450 mg/day, given in divided doses of not more than 150 mg each, may be considered for patients who show no clinical improvement after several weeks of treatment at 300 mg/day. Administer the 100-mg tablet 4 times daily to not exceed the limit of 150 mg in a single dose.

It is generally agreed that acute episodes of depression require several months or longer of antidepressant drug treatment beyond the response in the acute episode. It is unknown whether the dose of bupropion hydrochloride tablets needed for maintenance treatment is identical to the dose that provided an initial response. Periodically reassess the need for maintenance treatment and the appropriate dose for such treatment.

2.2 Dose Adjustment in Patients with Hepatic Impairment

In patients with moderate to severe hepatic impairment (Child-Pugh score: 7 to 15), the maximum dose of bupropion hydrochloride tablets is 75 mg/day. In patients with mild hepatic impairment (Child-Pugh score: 5 to 6), consider reducing the dose and/or frequency of dosing [see Use in Specific Populations (8.7), Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

2.3 Dose Adjustment in Patients with Renal Impairment

Consider reducing the dose and/or frequency of bupropion hydrochloride tablets in patients with renal impairment (Glomerular Filtration Rate less than 90 mL/min) [see Use in Specific Populations (8.6), Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

2.4 Switching a Patient to or from a Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitor (MAOI) Antidepressant

At least 14 days should elapse between discontinuation of an MAOI intended to treat depression and initiation of therapy with bupropion hydrochloride tablets. Conversely, at least 14 days should be allowed after stopping bupropion hydrochloride tablets before starting an MAOI antidepressant [see Contraindications (4), Drug Interactions (7.6)].

2.5 Use of Bupropion Hydrochloride Tablets with Reversible MAOIs Such as Linezolid or Methylene Blue

Do not start bupropion hydrochloride tablets in a patient who is being treated with a reversible MAOI such as linezolid or intravenous methylene blue. Drug interactions can increase the risk of hypertensive reactions. In a patient who requires more urgent treatment of a psychiatric condition, non-pharmacological interventions, including hospitalization, should be considered [see Contraindications (4), Drug Interactions (7.6)].

In some cases, a patient already receiving therapy with bupropion hydrochloride tablets may require urgent treatment with linezolid or intravenous methylene blue. If acceptable alternatives to linezolid or intravenous methylene blue treatment are not available and the potential benefits of linezolid or intravenous methylene blue treatment are judged to outweigh the risks of hypertensive reactions in a particular patient, bupropion hydrochloride tablets should be stopped promptly, and linezolid or intravenous methylene blue can be administered. The patient should be monitored for 2 weeks or until 24 hours after the last dose of linezolid or intravenous methylene blue, whichever comes first. Therapy with bupropion hydrochloride tablets may be resumed 24 hours after the last dose of linezolid or intravenous methylene blue.

The risk of administering methylene blue by non-intravenous routes (such as oral tablets or by local injection) or in intravenous doses much lower than 1 mg/kg with bupropion hydrochloride tablets is unclear. The clinician should, nevertheless, be aware of the possibility of a drug interaction with such use [see Contraindications (4), Drug Interactions (7.6)].

3 DOSAGE FORMS AND STRENGTHS

  • 75 mg – round, yellow colored tablets, debossed “191 ” on one side and plain on the other side.
  • 100 mg – round, red colored tablets, debossed “192 ” on one side and plain on the other side.

4 CONTRAINDICATIONS

  • Bupropion hydrochloride tablets are contraindicated in patients with a seizure disorder.
  • Bupropion hydrochloride tablets are contraindicated in patients with a current or prior diagnosis of bulimia or anorexia nervosa as a higher incidence of seizures was observed in such patients treated with bupropion hydrochloride tablets [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)].
  • Bupropion hydrochloride tablets are contraindicated in patients undergoing abrupt discontinuation of alcohol, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and antiepileptic drugs [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3), Drug Interactions (7.3)].
  • The use of MAOIs (intended to treat psychiatric disorders) concomitantly with bupropion hydrochloride tablets or within 14 days of discontinuing treatment with bupropion hydrochloride tablets is contraindicated. There is an increased risk of hypertensive reactions when bupropion hydrochloride tablets are used concomitantly with MAOIs. The use of bupropion hydrochloride tablets within 14 days of discontinuing treatment with an MAOI is also contraindicated. Starting bupropion hydrochloride tablets in a patient treated with reversible MAOIs such as linezolid or intravenous methylene blue is contraindicated [see Dosage and Administration (2.4, 2.5), Warnings and Precautions (5.4), Drug Interactions (7.6)].
  • Bupropion hydrochloride tablets are contraindicated in patients with known hypersensitivity to bupropion or other ingredients of bupropion hydrochloride tablets. Anaphylactoid/anaphylactic reactions and Stevens-Johnson syndrome have been reported [see Warnings and Precautions (5.8)].

5 WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS

5.1 Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors in Children, Adolescents, and Young Adults

Patients with MDD, both adult and pediatric, may experience worsening of their depression and/or the emergence of suicidal ideation and behavior (suicidality) or unusual changes in behavior, whether or not they are taking antidepressant medications, and this risk may persist until significant remission occurs. Suicide is a known risk of depression and certain other psychiatric disorders, and these disorders themselves are the strongest predictors of suicide. There has been a long-standing concern that antidepressants may have a role in inducing worsening of depression and the emergence of suicidality in certain patients during the early phases of treatment.

Pooled analyses of short-term placebo-controlled trials of antidepressant drugs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors [SSRIs] and others) show that these drugs increase the risk of suicidal thinking and behavior (suicidality) in children, adolescents, and young adults (ages 18 to 24) with MDD and other psychiatric disorders. Short-term clinical trials did not show an increase in the risk of suicidality with antidepressants compared with placebo in adults beyond age 24; there was a reduction with antidepressants compared with placebo in adults aged 65 and older.

The pooled analyses of placebo-controlled trials in children and adolescents with MDD, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), or other psychiatric disorders included a total of 24 short-term trials of 9 antidepressant drugs in over 4,400 subjects. The pooled analyses of placebo-controlled trials in adults with MDD or other psychiatric disorders included a total of 295 short-term trials (median duration of 2 months) of 11 antidepressant drugs in over 77,000 subjects. There was considerable variation in risk of suicidality among drugs, but a tendency toward an increase in the younger subjects for almost all drugs studied. There were differences in absolute risk of suicidality across the different indications, with the highest incidence in MDD. The risk differences (drug vs. placebo), however, were relatively stable within age strata and across indications. These risk differences (drug-placebo difference in the number of cases of suicidality per 1,000 subjects treated) are provided in Table 1.

Table 1. Risk Differences in the Number of Suicidality Cases by Age Group in the Pooled Placebo-Controlled Trials of Antidepressants in Pediatric and Adult Subjects

Age Range Drug-Placebo Difference in Number of Cases of Suicidality per 1,000 Subjects Treated
Increases Compared with Placebo
<18 14 additional cases
18-24 5 additional cases
Decreases Compared with Placebo
25-64 1 fewer case
≥65 6 fewer cases

No suicides occurred in any of the pediatric trials. There were suicides in the adult trials, but the number was not sufficient to reach any conclusion about drug effect on suicide.

It is unknown whether the suicidality risk extends to longer-term use, i.e., beyond several months. However, there is substantial evidence from placebo-controlled maintenance trials in adults with depression that the use of antidepressants can delay the recurrence of depression.

All patients being treated with antidepressants for any indication should be monitored appropriately and observed closely for clinical worsening, suicidality, and unusual changes in behavior, especially during the initial few months of a course of drug therapy, or at times of dose changes, either increases or decreases [see Boxed Warning].

The following symptoms, anxiety, agitation, panic attacks, insomnia, irritability, hostility, aggressiveness, impulsivity, akathisia (psychomotor restlessness), hypomania, and mania, have been reported in adult and pediatric patients being treated with antidepressants for major depressive disorder as well as for other indications, both psychiatric and nonpsychiatric. Although a causal link between the emergence of such symptoms and either the worsening of depression and/or the emergence of suicidal impulses has not been established, there is concern that such symptoms may represent precursors to emerging suicidality.

Consideration should be given to changing the therapeutic regimen, including possibly discontinuing the medication, in patients whose depression is persistently worse, or who are experiencing emergent suicidality or symptoms that might be precursors to worsening depression or suicidality, especially if these symptoms are severe, abrupt in onset, or were not part of the patient’s presenting symptoms.

Families and caregivers of patients being treated with antidepressants for MDD or other indications, both psychiatric and nonpsychiatric, should be alerted about the need to monitor patients for the emergence of agitation, irritability, unusual changes in behavior, and the other symptoms described above, as well as the emergence of suicidality, and to report such symptoms immediately to healthcare providers. Such monitoring should include daily observation by families and caregivers. Prescriptions for bupropion hydrochloride tablets should be written for the smallest quantity of tablets consistent with good patient management, in order to reduce the risk of overdose.

5.2 Neuropsychiatric Adverse Events and Suicide Risk in Smoking Cessation Treatment

Bupropion hydrochloride tablets are not approved for smoking cessation treatment; however, it contains the same active ingredient as the smoking cessation medication ZYBAN®. Serious neuropsychiatric adverse events have been reported in patients taking bupropion for smoking cessation. These postmarketing reports have included changes in mood (including depression and mania), psychosis, hallucinations, paranoia, delusions, homicidal ideation, aggression, hostility, agitation, anxiety, and panic, as well as suicidal ideation, suicide attempt, and completed suicide [see Adverse Reactions (6.2)]. Some patients who stopped smoking may have been experiencing symptoms of nicotine withdrawal, including depressed mood. Depression, rarely including suicidal ideation, has been reported in smokers undergoing a smoking cessations attempt without medication. However, some of these adverse events occurred in patients taking bupropion who continued to smoke.

Neuropsychiatric adverse events occurred in patients without and with pre-existing psychiatric disease; some patients experienced worsening of their psychiatric illnesses. Observe patients for the occurrence of neuropsychiatric adverse events. Advise patients and caregivers that the patient should stop taking bupropion hydrochloride tablets and contact a healthcare provider immediately if agitation, depressed mood, or changes in behavior or thinking that are not typical for the patient are observed, or if the patient develops suicidal ideation or suicidal behavior. In many postmarketing cases, resolution of symptoms after discontinuation of bupropion was reported. However, the symptoms persisted in some cases; therefore, ongoing monitoring and supportive care should be provided until symptoms resolve.

5.3 Seizure

Bupropion hydrochloride tablets can cause seizure. The risk of seizure is dose-related. The dose should not exceed 450 mg/day. Increase the dose gradually. Discontinue bupropion hydrochloride tablets and do not restart treatment if the patient experiences a seizure.

The risk of seizures is also related to patient factors, clinical situations, and concomitant medications that lower the seizure threshold. Consider these risks before initiating treatment with bupropion hydrochloride tablets. Bupropion hydrochloride tablets are contraindicated in patients with a seizure disorder, current or prior diagnosis of anorexia nervosa or bulimia, or undergoing abrupt discontinuation of alcohol, benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and antiepileptic drugs [see Contraindications (4), Drug Interactions (7.3)]. The following conditions can also increase the risk of seizure: severe head injury; arteriovenous malformation; CNS tumor or CNS infection; severe stroke; concomitant use of other medications that lower the seizure threshold (e.g., other bupropion products, antipsychotics, tricyclic antidepressants, theophylline, and systemic corticosteroids); metabolic disorders (e.g., hypoglycemia, hyponatremia, severe hepatic impairment, and hypoxia); use of illicit drugs (e.g., cocaine); or abuse or misuse of prescription drugs such as CNS stimulants. Additional predisposing conditions include diabetes mellitus treated with oral hypoglycemic drugs or insulin; use of anorectic drugs; and excessive use of alcohol, benzodiazepines, sedative/hypnotics, or opiates.

Incidence of Seizure with Bupropion Use

Bupropion is associated with seizures in approximately 0.4% (4/1,000) of patients treated at doses up to 450 mg/day. The estimated seizure incidence for bupropion hydrochloride tablets increases almost 10-fold between 450 and 600 mg/day.

The risk of seizure can be reduced if the dose of bupropion hydrochloride tablets does not exceed 450 mg/day, given as 150 mg 3 times daily, and the titration rate is gradual.

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