Bupropion in the Depression-Related Sexual Dysfunction: A Systematic Review
Valeska M. Pereira, Oscar Arias-Carrion, Sergio Machado, Antonio E. Nardi and Adriana C. Silva
Affiliation: Laboratory of Panic and Respiration. Institute of Psychiatry - Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Keywords: Antidepressants, bupropion, depression, pharmacotherapy, review, sexual dysfunction.
Depression is the most prevalent psychiatric disorder (16.6%) and is frequently associated with impairments in
several areas. Sexual dysfunction (SD) is a prevalent problem with rates ranging from 40-45% in adult women and 20-
30% in adult men. A relationship between depression and sexual dysfunction has been shown in the literature although the
mechanisms of this association are not yet clear. Many antidepressants, especially selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors
(SSRIs), list sexual dysfunction as a side effect. New drug alternatives with fewer side effects have been proposed, and
bupropion is one of them. This study aims to review the literature on bupropion and its impact in sexual function on
depressed subjects. Most of the studies have noted that bupropion is not only as effective as other antidepressants but has
the advantage of a lower impact on sexual functioning. Some other studies have found that bupropion can even enhance
sexual function in certain individuals. Bupropion is also effective, when combined with other antidepressants, in treating
emergent sexual dysfunction. Bupropion may be an alternative treatment for depression that does not include the sexual
side effects associated with most of the prescribed antidepressants available; however, additional research is required.
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