Does Wellbutrin affect fertility? (+3 factors)
In this article, we will discuss the effects of Wellbutrin on fertility. We will look into the factors that alter and impact fertility in both men and women while taking Wellbutrin as an antidepressant. Additionally, we will look at the ways to avoid fertility-related complications associated with Wellbutrin.
Does Wellbutrin affect fertility?
Wellbutrin may affect fertility in some individuals. The effects of Wellbutrin on male and female fertility are not very well documented. Wellbutrin is not generally associated with fertility-related complications but side effects may vary from person to person.
Wellbutrin is an atypical antidepressant that is most commonly prescribed for smoking cessation, attention deficit hypersensitivity disorder, and major depressive disorder. If your doctor has prescribed Wellbutrin for any of these conditions, you should discuss fertility concerns with him too.
As mentioned earlier, Wellbutrin may not be directly associated with causing fertility problems such as low sex drive or low libido. However, these issues may appear in a few populations taking Wellbutrin based on their response to the medication.
What does research suggest?
According to the research studies, Wellbutrin is an antidepressant that is associated with a lower incidence of causing sexual dysfunction in men. This effect can occur as a result of increased dopamine levels and a slight influence of Wellbutrin on serotonin levels (1).
Wellbutrin is an aminoketone atypical antidepressant that works by inhibiting the reuptake of dopamine and norepinephrine. It is also associated with inhibiting the reuptake of serotonin and nicotine to a lesser extent (2).
Wellbutrin is an effective antidepressant and is not significantly reported to cause sexual abnormalities such as arousal, desire, or orgasmic dysfunctions. It is also not associated with female fertility or sexual abnormalities. It is also not linked with any child-birth defects, miscarriages, or pregnancy-related problems (1,3).
Wellbutrin is instead used in combined treatment with other antidepressants such as Sertraline, Citalopram, and Fluoxetine which are commonly associated with sexual dysfunction in both men and women (1).
Wellbutrin is given in combination to reduce the severity of sexual abnormalities caused by other antidepressants. The sexual benefits of Wellbutrin are due to an increase in dopamine signaling in the brain (1).
What are the factors that may impact fertility with Wellbutrin?
Following are some of the factors that may cause fertility issues while being on Wellbutrin:
Hormonal imbalance and pre-existing health conditions
Hormonal imbalance due to underlying conditions and stress levels leads to devastating effects on sexual functioning in both men and women. Hormonal balance in women may disturb the menstrual cycle which may lead to difficulties in concieving.
Underlying health conditions such as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), thyroid disorders, or other hormonal disorders may affect fertility while being on Wellbutrin.
Dietary and lifestyle habits
Diet and lifestyle can significantly impact fertility in both men and women. A sedentary lifestyle with smoking and alcohol consumption may lead to harmful consequences related to fertility.
A healthy and nutritious diet with a well-hydrated body might have positive effects on fertility and sexual well-being. Therefore, maintaining a healthy lifestyle and dietary choices is beneficial and may impact fertility.
How to manage Wellbutrin-induced fertility issues?
If you are having Wellbutrin-associated fertility issues, then you need to consult your healthcare provider and discuss your health condition with them. You should be prescribed an alternate antidepressant that suits your health well and does not cause sexual side effects.
Based on your health condition, your prescriber might alter your medication dose which might potentially reduce the occurrence of sexual side effects associated with Wellbutrin.
Since Wellbutrin is an antidepressant, it should not be abruptly stopped due to fertility-associated side effects. Consult your prescriber before stopping the medication to avoid any withdrawal symptoms.
In the above article, we have discussed the effects of Wellbutrin on male and female fertility. We have discovered some factors that may impact fertility in patients taking Wellbutrin.
We have discussed how Wellbutrin-induced side effects should be managed in the general population. These side effects do not affect every patient but may affect a few based on their drug response.
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Cavariani, M. M., de Almeida Kiguti, L. R., de Lima Rosa, J., de Araújo Leite, G. A., Silva, P. V. e, Pupo, A. S., & De Grava Kempinas, W. (2015). Bupropion treatment increases epididymal contractility and impairs sperm quality with no effects on the epididymal sperm transit time of male rats. Journal of Applied Toxicology, 35(9), 1007–1016. doi:10.1002/jat.3089 https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25645087/
Huecker MR, Smiley A, Saadabadi A. Bupropion. [Updated 2023 Apr 9]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK470212/
Mother To Baby | Fact Sheets [Internet]. Brentwood (TN): Organization of Teratology Information Specialists (OTIS); 1994-. Bupropion (Wellbutrin®) 2021 Oct. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK582611/