Medical Advice

Strattera vs Wellbutrin: For The Treatment of ADHD and MDD

Strattera vs Wellbutrin

Mental health disorders are becoming more and more common, especially in the adult population. According to statistics, one in every four American adults suffers from a diagnosable mental health condition.

Oftentimes, approaching a licensed healthcare expert about these conditions is the best option for people suffering from such disorders. Professionals sometimes recommend medicines along with therapy to help their patients. Two medicines that may be recommended by doctors are Strattera and Wellbutrin.

In this blog, ‘Strattera Vs Wellbutrin’, we are going to learn about these drugs and what these drugs are used for.

What is Strattera?

Strattera is a branded drug that contains atomoxetine as its active ingredient. This drug is approved by the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) for the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in patients. It is a prescription drug.

Strattera belongs to a class of drugs called selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SRNI). The generic variant of Strattera, called atomoxetine is also available.

What is Wellbutrin?

Wellbutrin is a branded medicine that is administered by healthcare professionals to treat Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) in adults. Bupropion is the generic variant and the active ingredient of this drug.

Wellbutrin is a prescription drug and it is classified as an aminokitone antidepressant. This drug is discontinued, however, other formulations namely Wellbutrin SR and Wellbutrin XL are available.

Comparison: Strattera vs Wellbutrin

Let’s compare both medications depending on various factors as follows-

Uses of Both Drugs

In this section, we will learn about the uses of Strattera and Wellbutrin drugs.


Strattera drug is administered in the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a disorder that affects the behavior of a person. ADHD patients find it difficult to pay attention, control impulsivity and manage hyperactivity.

Wellbutrin and Wellbutrin SR

Wellbutrin and Wellbutrin SR are used in the treatment of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). Major Depressive Disorder or MDD is a disorder that affects the mood of a person. People suffering from this disorder often find themselves experiencing persistent feelings of sadness and loss of interest. MDD patients may have suicidal idealization. This condition requires long term treatment.

Wellbutrin XL

Wellbutrin XL is used in the treatment of:

1) Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)

2) Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD is described as depression that occurs only during certain seasons, most commonly during winter. It is believed that shorter days and lesser daylight lead to chemical changes in the brain which causes SAD.

Forms of Both Drugs (Strattera vs Wellbutrin)

Strattera is available in the following forms:

Wellbutrin is of the following forms:

  • 75 mg tablets
  • 100 mg tablets

The forms and strengths of Wellbutrin SR are:

  • 100 mg tablet
  • 150 mg tablet
  • 200 mg tablet

Wellbutrin XL is available in the forms as follows-

  • 150 mg Extended-release tablet
  • 300 mg Extended-release tablet

Dosages of Strattera and Wellbutrin:

The doctor recommends the dosage strength after examining the patients carefully as follows-


For children:

An initial daily dosage is 0.5 mg/kg. The target dose of Strattera is 1.2 mg/kg. The maximum dose should not exceed 1.4 mg/kg.

For children who weigh more than 70 kg and adults, the initial daily dose is 40 mg. The target dose is 80 mg and the maximum dose is 80 mg.


The doctor prescribes an initial dose of Wellbutrin is 100 mg, twice a day. The dose is increased until on day 4, 300 mg per day is reached. This dose is taken in portions of 100 mg, three times a day. The maximum dose of Wellbutrin is 450 mg per day.

Wellbutrin SR

The initial dose is 150 mg per day of Wellbutrin SR. The dose is regulated until desired results are achieved, usual target dose is 300 mg per day. Maximum dose of this drug 400 mg a day.

Wellbutrin XL

(i) For MDD

  • The usual starting dose for MDD patients is 150 mg per day.
  • The target dose, in most cases, is 300 mg per day.

(ii) For SAD

  • The treatment is started in the autumn and continued throughout winter.
  • The Starting dose is 150 mg per day. It might be changed until the target dose is reached.
  • The target dose is generally 300 mg per day.

Drug Interactions:

Strattera drugs may interact with various medicines, so tell the doctor about all the medications that you or your child is taking. If you are taking medicines for asthma, anti-depression (MAOIs), medicines for blood pressure, allergy or cold medicines, etc then tell the doctor before starting Strattera treatments.

The drug Wellbutrin may also interact with various medicines and can cause various side effects. It interacts with insulin, asthma medicines., HIV medicines, seizure medicines, antidepressants, etc. Also, it interacts with those medicines that are used for managing mood disorders such as anti-anxiety medicines, birth control pills, sleeping pills, medications that are used for weight loss, Other ADHD medications, diabetes medicines, and medicines used for nausea/vomiting. All drug interactions are not mentioned in this blog, but you will get an idea of it.

Side Effects: Strattera vs Wellbutrin

Common side effects that may be caused due to Strattera or Wellbutrin use are as follows:


  • Reduced appetite
  • Mood swings
  • Upset stomach
  • Nausea
  • Dry mouth
  • Discomfort while urinating
  • Vomiting
  • Tiredness
  • Faintness


  • Insomnia
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sweating
  • Vomiting
  • Frequent urination
  • Muscle pain
  • Confusion
  • Nausea
  • Rash

In rare cases, severe adverse effects like allergic reactions, chest pain, and problems with breathing can occur. Such instances should not be ignored and medical experts must be informed about them immediately.

Precautions of Wellbutrin and Strattera Drug:

Listed below are some of the safety measures and guidelines while using Strattera and Wellbutrin. To avoid the risk of side effects, follow the guidelines provided by the healthcare expert strictly:

  • One should not take Strattera or Wellbutrin drugs if he/she has used MAO inhibitors in the previous 14 days
  • Taking Strattera and Wellbutrin with certain other medicines can cause drug interactions. To avoid drug interactions, never take any medicines.
  • Taking alcohol with these medicines can increase the risk of side effects. So, don’t take alcohol.
  • before they start using Strattera or Wellbutrin drugs, Individuals have to tell healthcare experts about their medical history


In conclusion, we have seen that Strattera and Wellbutrin are used in the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Major Depressive Disorder. While taking these drugs it is important to follow the safety measures for decreasing the risk of side effects. Strattera belongs to a selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SRNI) drug class and Wellbutrin is classified as an aminoketone antidepressant. Both drugs can interact with various medicines so it is important to consult with a doctor and tell the doctor all the medical history openly. This blog may not include all the information but you get an idea of both medicines that will be helpful for you to choose the best one to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and MDD( Major Depressive Disorder)

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