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1345272 tn?1276403928

Methadone and Wellburtin?

I just joined this site in hopes to find an answer or some advice. I am currently on methadone and have been for about a year now, and i am dealing with a lot of anxiety and depression. I have been on celexa for about 7 years and the doctor decided that i have become immune to it, so he is putting me on wellburtin. I haven't tried it yet because i havent heard good things so far and am a little worried. I'm also concerned about side effects from taking the two drugs together even though the doctor said it wouldn't be a problem. I am really tired and am dealing with extreme fatigue and anxiety. I am not using any other drugs. Any advice would be awesome.
14 Responses
Avatar universal
Hi I also take that combo, at first when I started taking wellburtin I got very tiredyet after a few weeks that feeling went away. Most of the time when our docs change our antidpresstion drugs you have that side effect , it also takes awhile for it to start working at full force. I'm not going to tell you that you should take it or not I just know it takes awhile to work. It works good for me with no side effects.
Avatar universal
If you do decide to take it make sure that your Dr. does not prescribe the generic.  All the active ingreidents are the same but the fillers are different and have different side effects.  I personally had an awful time with the generic and finally my insurance will pay for name brand.
whats the difference ? just started generic today.
How's it going on the wellbutrin?  You don't need to worry about it being generic.  I've been on generic for 7 years and it's been fine.  It may help with extreme fatigue associated with methadone. From my experience methadone, being a broad spectrum opioid is the most sedating.
1042487 tn?1275283499
There is no danger at all in taking both medication together.

Wellbutrin is a rather stimulating antidepressant and is working by inhibiting the reuptake of dopamine and norepinephrine. It is usually used in combo with a SSRI like Celexa in people who are not responding correctly to the SSRIs. Since Wellbutrin doesn't affect your serotonin (well it is but very very slightly) I don't personally recommend you stop taking Celexa but take both if you want to quit Celexa you must at least taper it slowly. Maybe switch Celexa to another SSRI like Lexapro or Prozac.

The bad things you read about Wellbutrin are probably that it lowers the seizure's threshold and it is true but there should not be anything to be worried about if you are not suffering from epilepsy or taking the medication as indicated by your doctor. It is true that some report problems with the generic and therefore I too suggest the brand name even tho this opinion is only based on other people's reviews.

1345272 tn?1276403928
Thanks for the feedback. I took my first wellbutrin pill today and i must say i had an awful time. I felt actually worse than i ever have in quite some time, i cried a lot and just felt really uncomfortable and sad, and my anxiety was still the same. I find i've felt worse lately with the doctor tapering the celexa down so fast and then adding this new drug to the mix. I also forgot to mention that hes got me on cymbalta now too, 60mg. I'd have to say that i really felt better when i was just on the celexa and methadone alone. Just really tired and anxious. I'm really worried about taking these 4 drugs together. It just seems like a lot to me.
It takes 3 weeks for the medicine wellbutrin to get in your system and work so. one day would not cause them feelings. Give it some time. I hope it gets better.
1345272 tn?1276403928
Do you mean to say you are on both methadone and wellbutrin or celexa? I feel really tired as well but then again i just started taking it and ive been dealing with extreme fatigue beforehand, this is all really confusing to me... I just want to feel normal.
1042487 tn?1275283499
Cymbalta and Wellbutrin + Methadone sounds good to me. I mean I personally tried Cymbalta for a few months a few months ago and it worked very well. Cymbalta was stimulating for me and gave me a lot of energy on it's on without using Wellbutrin. What is the other medication you are talkin about when you say 4 medications?

1345272 tn?1276403928
and celexa.. thats the one the doctor is tapering me off of and it makes me really uneasy considering ive been on it for so long. With the cymbalta ive only been on it for 3 weeks and so far i don't feel much of a difference at all. Just the same fatigue/depression and anxiety i feel regularly. I sure did feel a negative effect from the wellbutrin today though. Do you think if i continue taking the wellbutrin the negative side effects would ease? My doctor is on vacation so i am not able to give him any feedback for a month and i feel really bad lately and am worried these meds are making me feel worse.
1042487 tn?1275283499

first of all did you start on 30mg Cymbalta? Starting with 60mg while being on Celexa sounds a bit overwhelming to me, especially with starting Wellbutrin (don't break any Cymbalta capsules to half dose because the capsule is designed to release the drug for an extended period of time, stay on 60mg). You must know that there are unpleasant side-effects when starting a new drugs. I had 4 bad weeks before i felt the Cymbalta kicking in.

The reason why your doctor is tapering Celexa so quick is because Cymbalta is doing the same job as Celexa by inhibiting the reuptake of serotonin but what is different is the norepinephrine reuptake which make Cymbalta a SNRI (serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor) rather than a SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) like Celexa.

I do think if you keep going with Wellbutrin and Cymbalta you will be doing just fine. Wellbutrin might be unpleasant when taking the first doses, just like any other antidepressant but the side-effects will eventually go away as your body adapts to the medicines.

If after 1 month taking both drugs you don't see any improvements then you might consider trying something else but seriously Cymbalta+Wellbutrin is really supposed to give you energy and make you function more normally. In fact some people have trouble sleeping on Cymbalta due to it's energizing effect. Same is true for Wellburtrin.

Taking both medications will work on all your monoamines that is serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine and especially norepinephrine since both Cymbalta and Wellbutrin are workin on the reuptake inhibition of norepinephrine (noradrenaline, see the link with energizing and analgesic effect now?). I think the cocktail should be working just fine.

Cymbalta is hard to stop and gave me brain zaps for 1 month+1-2 weeks when I stopped it cold turkey so when you are ready to stop it please stop it really gradually to avoid any bad withdrawal symptoms.

1345272 tn?1276403928
He put me right on 60. So maybe that is why i feel a bit overwhelmed right now. Thanks so much for the insight, you're awesome. much appreciated.
Avatar universal
Hi ..yes I take cymbalta..wellbutrin and methadone for pain, I remember when I first went on antidepresents I was falling asleep all the time..three times even at a baby shower, It take a good month before you will even up and hopefully you will feel great. What you are going threw with your meds is very normal. take care and keep in touch
2010150 tn?1328549447
I am on wellbutrin, 40mgs daily of methadone and buspar ( aniexty med that is non narcotic) I have had no problems...I started taking the wellbutrin and buspar about a month ago now preparing for my detox from the methadone...i hope you're doing well :)
Avatar universal
hi ,I read your post ,are you sure your not having withdrawal syptoms from methadone for some reason or  with drawal from doc taking you off celxa.W.Ds can make you tired and anxious at same time.Do you know what with drawals feels like from methadone and or from celexa? ask doc to slow down on how quickly he's weaning you from celxa.Good luck and make sure your methadone dose is correct dose for you too.
Avatar universal
I have been on methadone for about three years and started coming down 2mg a week about a 9 months ago. I am now at 30 mg and am starting to feel anxious and depressed. I consulted my doctor about a medication that would help with these symptoms and my doctor at first prescribed me Celexa and I was doing really well with that medication. When i returned to my doctor for in increase of the Celexa she noticed that taking Methadone and Celexa together was not a good idea because it could cause irregular heartbeats and could potentially be life threatening in some cases and because she was not too familiar with methadone she just found out of the symptoms. She told me she could not prescribe it to me anymore and that unfortunately there are a lot of antidepressants that don't mix well with methadone and there weren't many more options of antidepressants she could prescribe me being a PCP but that we could try Wellbutrin because she found that was one antidepressant that could be safely mixed with methadone. She started me on 150mg of the generic Wellbutrin called Bupropion HCL and after only a week of taking it I was getting horrible stomach pains, nausea and severe headaches. I stopped taking it and called my doctor immediately. She told me she may have started me on too high of a dose and brought me down to 75mgs. the first day wasn't great and I have only been on 75 mgs for about a week but I am starting to feel better with the headaches and stomach issues. The anxiety and depression haven't gone away completely but it has helped a little and should hopefully continue to do so. My doctor also told me that the only other option that she, as a PCP could prescribe me was Cymbalta if the Wellbutrin didn't work. She told me to refer to a Psychiatrist who was experienced with Methadone if I needed something more because as a Primary Care Physician she could legally only give me certain medications. Im hoping the Wellbutrin will start to help with my anxiety and depression because I found in my area it is very difficult to find a psychiatrist in such a short period of time never mind one that has been educated about methadone. I hope this can help someone and if there are any other antidepressants/anxiety medications that mix well with methadone I would be glad to hear some other options.
Avatar universal
I have had no problem with mixing the two yet and I'm on 120mg methadone and 150xr wellbutrin.
I am on 102mg of methadone and I just started wellbutrin's generic today. I have been severely depressed and it has been horrible. I was put on Zoloft first because years ago I took it for years but, nono  it collided with each other and gave me serotonin syndrome. My advice and opinion, do not take Zoloft I thought it was gonna kill me before it got out of my system and I went off of it , itput me in a severe depression, Havent gotten out of bed for a week. I was told by my clinic that wellbutrin is the safest antidepressant to take with high doses of methadone. I pray this work but, I have to wait and see. Any comments on METHADONE AND WELLBUTRIN_ PLEASE LET ME KNOW HOW IT WORKED?.....
Can't comment on the combo, I've never been an opiate addict so I don't know anything about methadone, but just want to say, you're on a 5 year old post so don't know if anyone here is still following it.  You might get better results by making a new post, and even by posting on the addiction forum.  You don't say why you're on methadone or why the dose is what it is, but are you sure just taking Zoloft gave you serotonin syndrome?  Highly unlikely, and this is a very uncommon problem.  As far as I know, correct me here if I'm wrong, but opiates don't target serotonin so I'm not sure why taking both would give you serotonin syndrome.  You also need to know that getting the drug out of your system happened a day after you stopped taking it.  Zoloft doesn't last a long time in the body.  The problem is the same as you get if you stop the methadone, which is withdrawal.  As for putting you in a severe depression, it takes 4-6 weeks for an antidepressant to start working, but side effects start right away.  It probably wasn't the right med for you, but I'm sure that combining very sedating opiates with usually sedating ssris might present the problem you had.  Methadone, as with all opiates, can cause depression, as it's a downer drug -- it depresses the system, lowers energy, etc.  Wellbutrin is a far more stimulating antidepressant, as it works differently, so that might be why it might work better with opiates.  I don't know about that, though, just wanted to say, different people get different reactions from meds.  For anxiety sufferers, wellbutrin can be death warmed over, but for depressed people it can provide a boost.  I hope it works for you.  Are you on methadone for pain or because you can't get off opiate addiction?  
Seritonin syndrome is serious and yes im on methadone for 5years and yes I'm not sure of the biology but opiates affect the serotonin so using any other drug that affects it can be very bad. I learned through experience. I believe if you are detoxing from methadone even on a slow taper your serotonin levels are raised. So then taking any other drug that could potentially raise or mess with serotonin could put you into serotonin syndrome...this feels like withdrawl. I took Htp-5 from the pharmacy and went into serotonin syndrome from just one vitamin....I was on a very slow detox from methadome. It felt just like opiate withdrawl so I started researching. I believe when we withdrawl from opiates that's what we are partly experiencing is the serotonin syndrome. So in my opinion if you are on methadone stay away from any drug that affects serotonin in any way. I learned the hard way. And the doctors never warned me. I don't think they even know...most of them anyway.
First, 5-HTP isn't a vitamin, it's a metabolite of the amino acid tryptophan, which you ingest every time you eat a complete protein.  Taking one pill probably wouldn't even do anything because, like taking serotonin affecting drugs, it takes  a while for your brain to take it up.  So I just want to ask, were you definitely diagnosed with serotonin syndrome from anything you did?  It's a very severe problem and it doesn't at all feel like withdrawal -- it involves hallucinations, severe chills, sweating, and a host of things that get you to the ER.  I suppose a horrible withdrawal can also cause these things, but I would hope anyone who gets such a severe set of physiological symptoms heads directly for the ER.  As for opiates, they affect serotonin indirectly, as they directly affect dopamine, the same neurotransmitter targeted by wellbutrin.  But because this causes an imbalance with all your brain neurotransmitters, yes, you can get serotonin syndrome by combining serotonin affecting drugs with opiates if you're taking enough opiates, and methadone is one of a group of them that this happens most commonly with.  The reverse can also happen if you take too much of an antidepressant, you can cause an overdose of dopamine.  The body maintains a delicate balance, and drugs throw that balance off intentionally.  Sometimes it's fun for a short time, sometimes it's beneficial medically, but it always has to be done with care.
And just to add, 5-HTP or tryptophan should be avoided if you're in withdrawal -- it can make it worse.  Best to wait out the withdrawal or taper off more slowly and if you want to try natural medicine do it after withdrawal is done with.
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