Wellbutrin vs Wellbutrin XL: Difference and Comparison

When it comes to sadness, it is natural to feel it, but when sadness is at the extreme, it seems to be a difficult thing.

Even after a week, if sadness persists and the ability to socialize is being interfered with, it is likely to undergo depression. Fortunately, depression is not everything’s end.   

Several methods are available for treatment, including group discussions, psychotherapy, and medication usage. Many antidepressants have been proven in depression symptoms disappear effectively.

Two of them are Wellbutrin and Wellbutrin XL. 

Key Takeaways

  1. Wellbutrin comes in immediate-release form, while Wellbutrin XL is an extended-release version.
  2. Patients take Wellbutrin 2-3 times daily but only take Wellbutrin XL once daily.
  3. Wellbutrin XL maintains a steadier drug concentration in the bloodstream than Wellbutrin.

Wellbutrin vs Wellbutrin XL  

Wellbutrin is an antidepressant medication, used to treat major depressive disorder and seasonal affective disorder. Wellbutrin XL, a variation of the same medication, features an extended-release formula, which allows for once-daily dosing and a smoother, more constant release of the active drug into the body.

Quiche vs Souffle 2023 06 24T232300.021

Wellbutrin, or simply bupropion, is a medication antidepressant used to treat major depressive disorder. It is not preferred to stop using Wellbutrin suddenly and change the dose unless you are having a seizure.

Unpleasant withdrawal symptoms can be seen while suddenly stopping the dosage. 

Wellbutrin XL belongs to the medications family called anti-depressants. It is believed to work by dopamine and noradrenaline balance affecting chemicals in the brain that naturally occur and affect mood.

The medication’s full effects might not be seen until after treatment for some weeks. 

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonWellbutrinWellbutrin XL
InterpretationIt is used to treat a range of conditions including smoking cessation, depression, and other mood disorders.It also works as an anti-depressant but also prevents seasonal affective disorder or SAD.
VersionWellbutrin XL is it is one of the versionExtended-release version
Generic nameBupropionBupropion XL
Dosage Starting dose: 150 mg
Target dose: 150 mg
Starting dose: 150 mg
Target dose: 300 mg
Side effectsMoreFewer

What is Wellbutrin? 

As is already mentioned, Wellbutrin is used to treat depression, but it is not preferred to take Zyban for quitting smoking. In the past 14 days,  if an MAO inhibitor like linezolid, rasagiline, methylene blue injection, etc., has been taken, then do not use Wellbutrin because dangerous drug interaction could occur.  

Also Read:  Ionic, Covalent vs Metallic Bonds: Difference and Comparison

Severe high blood pressure can be seen while taking Wellbutrin, especially using a replacement product of nicotine. It can cause a false positive screening of the drug.

The risk of seizures can be increased while drinking alcohol with Wellbutrin.  

Anything that needs to be alert, like driving, is careful because Wellbutrin might impair reactions or thinking.

Emergency medical help is required if signs of allergic reactions emerge, like fever, difficulty breathing, hives, swollen glands, itching, and swelling in the throat or face.  

Report any worsening or new symptoms to the doctor, like behavior or mood changes, trouble sleeping, panic attacks, anxiety, and depression.

Also, if you feel agitated, impulsive, irritable, aggressive, hostile, hyperactive, restless, or have thoughts about suicide. 

wellbutrin 1

What is Wellbutrin XL? 

Without consulting Dr, there is no need to take Wellbutrin XL. Also, do not give Wellbutrin XL to anyone else, even if the person shows the same symptoms.

It comes in creamy white to pale yellow and is round in shape with “WXL 300” printed in grey ink.  

Nonmedical ingredients consisting of Wellbutrin XL are glyceryl behenate, denatured ethyl alcohol, isopropyl alcohol, polyethylene glycol, methyl acrylic acid co-polymer dispersion, and many more.

Before depression symptoms develop in the autumn, this medication should be started through the winter. This is known as seasonal depression prevention.  

150 mg daily of Wellbutrin XL should be taken in the morning to treat major depressive disorder. The recommended Wellbutrin XL’s starting dose is only one in the morning.

After one week at the lower dose, this dose might be increased to 300 mg daily.  

Also Read:  Allergy vs Inflammation: Difference and Comparison

Consult a doctor if side effects like skin rashes, bloating, migraine, weight changes, nausea, migraine, and the signs of liver problems occur and they are bothersome or severe. Several people might experience side effects other than these. 


Main Differences Between Wellbutrin and Wellbutrin XL 

  1. Appetite loss, constipation, hair loss, and drowsiness may occur while taking Wellbutrin. On the other hand, a person may suffer from conditions like dry mouth, sore throat, vomiting, nausea, and headache while taking Wellbutrin XL.  
  2. In the blood, to achieve a constant drug concentration dose of Wellbutrin can be increased to twice daily. Meanwhile, the dose of Wellbutrin XL was released in a 24-hour time frame since given once a day.  
  3. Before using Wellbutrin, it is vital to tell the doctor about medical history, especially of alcohol dependence, heart disease, and liver problems. In contrast, medical history related to seizures, diabetes, and kidney problems is vital to tell the doctor before using Wellbutrin XL.  
  4. Antipsychotics, corticosteroids, blood thinners, and MAOIs are medications that might influence Wellbutrin’s work. On the contrary, codeine, tamoxifen, pimozide, and thioridazine can lead to potential interaction at the same time as Wellbutrin XL.  
  5. The most obvious advantage of any medication is the drug’s reduced frequency which leads to better patient compliance. While taking Wellbutrin, patients find it inconvenient due to intake at certain periods. Conversely, Wellbutrin XL feels better compliance with the patient. 


  1. https://jpet.aspetjournals.org/content/215/1/127.short
  2. https://www.psychiatrist.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/26101_years-clinical-experience-bupropion-hcl-bupropion.pdf

Last Updated : 14 October, 2023

dot 1
One request?

I’ve put so much effort writing this blog post to provide value to you. It’ll be very helpful for me, if you consider sharing it on social media or with your friends/family. SHARING IS ♥️

7 thoughts on “Wellbutrin vs Wellbutrin XL: Difference and Comparison”

Leave a Comment

Want to save this article for later? Click the heart in the bottom right corner to save to your own articles box!