Back on Wellbutrin for Crohn's & It's Working Again

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Gumart1
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 56
   Posted 5/19/2011 8:45 PM (GMT -6)   
I had stopped the Wellbutrin a couple of months back because I was losing weight quickly. about 3 weeks ago I decided to have another go at it, this time at a lower (200mg daily) dosage. I still take the immediate release form as recommended. Within 2 days, my flare subsided and I went from having maybe 5-7 cramps a day to just 1 a day and sometimes pain-free. It seems that, whereas before the Wellbutrin I would have major pains if I ate the wrong foods, now I just have excessive gas. I have not lost any more weight at this dosage, but I have been unable to gain the weight back that I had lost. I don't feel I am in remission, but I truly believe the drug is helping greatly, and very quickly. My only side effect now is dry mouth and occasional insomnia. I would like to add another drug that might get me into a full remission. My gastro doc was willing to prescribe LDN before and unfortunately it did not work for me. He was skeptical so I wonder what his reaction will be to hear about Wellbutrin for Crohn's. My primary internist is the one prescribing it. I used to read ubob's posts about the Wellbutrin, but couldn't find the actual patients to come forward with their experiences with it. I was skeptical, but now I'm glad I took a chance with it.

Noulls
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 92
   Posted 5/20/2011 7:42 AM (GMT -6)   
Please keep us updated on your progress. I am considering it and would like to know if anyone else has tried it. I tried to research the doc who proposed the treatment but could only find a few small case studies.

cupcakespinkgal
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 720
   Posted 5/27/2011 8:13 AM (GMT -6)   
Gumart1

How are you doing? Still feeling good?
Diagnosed with Crohn's in 1998, father has UC we were both diagnosed at 20 yrs old.
Previously on Remicade, Humira - No surgeries so far

Meds ~ Sulfasalazine 2/2xday, 3mg LDN
Supps ~ Culturellle, psylium seed, Florastor, magnesium, D3, K2, Calcium/Boron, multi-mineral.

Gumart1
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 56
   Posted 5/27/2011 9:43 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for asking - While I feel that Wellbutrin definitely made a recognizable difference, it did not put me into remission. I must admit that I went back on at a 200mg per day immediate release dosage, and the recommended is 300mg a day. I did this because I lost weight on the full dosage, and wanted to avoid it this time around. I did not lose weight at the lower dosage. It reduced my cramping by at least half or more and the results were almost immediate. It eliminated my constipation too. But, I still had some night sweats and other Crohn's symptoms. My Gastroenterologist had previously agreed to prescribe LDN for me which didn't work for me. His reaction to my being on Wellbutrin (prescribed by primary Internist) was that it couldn't hurt me but was useless for the Crohn's. He has been pushing for Remicade since the beginning which has been difficult for me to accept since I lead a normal life with once a day bowel movements and plenty of energy. I do admit that I have an occasional flare usually brought on by stress. My bloodwork goes back and forth, at worst showing elevated CRP and ESR levels with just under the norm red blood cell counts, slight anemia, and then returning to normal again. He did not believe in all the other drugs because he felt that I needed to be in remission and stay there and the Remicade was most effective for it. I may give in a give it a try; I figure it may not work at all, or I may have some bad side effects and stop, or perhaps it may actually get me into full remission. As Nanners often says, the Crohn's may be damaging the intestines on a microscopic level. I am relatively young (41) and would like to keep most of my bowel if I can! I have a HUGE scar (10 inches) from my first and only resection at age 13. I'd like to avoid surgery if I can. I support trying Wellbutrin fully. The only side effects that stuck around were the dry mouth and occasional insomnia.

cupcakespinkgal
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 720
   Posted 5/28/2011 11:50 AM (GMT -6)   
Glad to hear you are still doing well, although too bad you aren't in remission. I have a prescription for it and I am thinking about trying it. I have given LDN a good go and it just doesn't keep me in remission. I thought it was, but I just had my usual spring flare and it is a nasty one. I don't think the LDN was healing my colon at all.

I'll let you know if I try it. The insomnia does have me concerned because it seems like a very common side effect and I am one of those people that does not do well without sleep. I fall apart!
Diagnosed with Crohn's in 1998, father has UC we were both diagnosed at 20 yrs old.
Previously on Remicade, Humira - No surgeries so far

Meds ~ Sulfasalazine 2/3xday
Supps ~ Culturellle, psylium seed, Florastor, magnesium, D3, K2, Calcium/Boron, multi-mineral.

cupcakespinkgal
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 720
   Posted 6/16/2011 1:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Gunmart, are you still taking the Wellbutrin? How are you feeling?

I started the prescription I had and I am doing quite well. I had a bad flare the beginning of May after being on LDN for 6 months. I threw in the towel on the LDN. I have now been on 300 mg for 2 weeks and most of my symptoms have subsided. I started out slow to minimize side effects, I took 100 mg for a couple days, then 200 mg, and then up to 300 mg.

By the end of May I was having elevated body temp every afternoon (almost a fever), blood, D, urgency, and at my low point going almost every 1 - 2 hours. The bleeding and urgency are gone. The D is only my first bathroom trip in the AM. The rest of the day I am having formed pretty normal BMs. My body temp is back down to normal. I am still going about 6-7 times a day. But I did start a high calorie diet recently to help me gain weight, so I am not sure how many of the trips are still my Crohn's and how much is just the increase in the volume of food.

All in all I definitely feel better and feel like my inflammation is greatly decreased. We shall see after I have been on it in a month or two. In the last 2 years I have been flaring most of the time with 1 month spontaneous remission periods here and there. I guess the test will be if I can have little to no symptoms for a period longer than 1 month.
Diagnosed with Crohn's in 1998, father has UC we were both diagnosed at 20 yrs old.
Previously on Remicade, Humira - No surgeries so far

Meds ~ Sulfasalazine 2/2xday, 300 mg Wellbutrin
Supps ~ Culturellle, psylium seed, folic acid, magnesium, D3, K2, Calcium/Boron, multi-mineral.

Gumart1
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 56
   Posted 6/16/2011 2:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Cupcakespingal,, it's wonderful to hear that you are improving on the Wellbutrin. Any problems with insomnia? That was probably the most annoying side effect, as well as the dry mouth. Like you, LDN did nothing for me except cause extreme insomnia, even at a low dose.

I am so confused by Wellbutrin. I was supposed to start Remicade, but hesitated because I felt I didn't give the Wellburin enough of a chance. I started up again a couple of weeks ago and felt a huge, very measurable decrease in symptoms. What I am not sure about, is if this was the result of the Wellbutrin or that my flare was naturally coming to an end.

Besides the anti-TNF properties it's supposed to have, I feel like the Wellbutrin helped because as a stimulant it speeds up everything, and perhaps moves the food more quickly through the digestive tract, giving the bad bacteria less time to attack the intestines? I really have no idea. Now that I have said how much I liked it, yesterday I started having signs of a flare including a slightly inflamed part of my tongue and some cramping. about 2 hours ago ago I discovered that I have a 101 degree fever. I'm convinced this is a flare-up, as I've had the fevers before, and will probably have night sweats tonight too. I haven't given up on these alternative drugs, but I'm going to try the Remicade next week ans see how I fee after.

Sometimes we don't realize how sick we were until we feel better. Cupcakespinkgal, I'd love to hear of your experience with Remicade, though I have a pretty good handle on what to except. I hope you have continued success with the Wellbutrin.

cupcakespinkgal
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 720
   Posted 6/16/2011 3:54 PM (GMT -6)   
Remicade for me was a miracle for several years. It has been the only thing that has put me in complete remission where I could eat anything and do anything and didn't feel like I had a chronic illness.

I first did Remicade when it was very first approved and you only got 1 dose for non-fistulizing Crohn's and 3 doses for fistulizing Crohn's. I got 1 dose and it put me in remission for 2 years. Started a flare and got 3 doses of Remicade and went into remission for another 2 years. Then flared so bad I ended up in the hospital and restarted Remicade which I continued every 10 weeks for about 5 years.

That is why I was so intrigued by the Wellbutrin, my Crohn's has always responded very well to anti-TNF drugs. I would have normal poop as soon as 2 to 3 days after an infusion. Same with Humira, I would do a shot on a Friday night and have normal poop by Sunday. I only quit the Humira because I had a ton of side effects, including Psoriasis that was progressively getting worse and disappeared when I stopped it. I never had those side effects with Remicade.

Actually with this last flare my doctor wanted me to restart Remicade, but I couldn't face restarting it again. Both times before when I restarted it I would initially have a bad reaction, but then everything would be fine as I continued treatment. We have been moving and starting new jobs and I just couldn't face the initial trouble restarting usually caused me.

Good luck next week, I hope you are one of the lucky ones that responds quickly!
Diagnosed with Crohn's in 1998, father has UC we were both diagnosed at 20 yrs old.
Previously on Remicade, Humira - No surgeries so far

Meds ~ Sulfasalazine 2/2xday, 300 mg Wellbutrin
Supps ~ Culturellle, psylium seed, folic acid, magnesium, D3, K2, Calcium/Boron, multi-mineral.

cupcakespinkgal
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 720
   Posted 6/16/2011 3:58 PM (GMT -6)   
Oh and to answer your questions, yes I did have a little insomnia. It doesn't really bother me now as long as I take my 3rd dose by 7 pm. I also have a little dry mouth but it is really sporadic. Won't notice for days and then have a day where I feel like I need to constantly be drinking something.
Diagnosed with Crohn's in 1998, father has UC we were both diagnosed at 20 yrs old.
Previously on Remicade, Humira - No surgeries so far

Meds ~ Sulfasalazine 2/2xday, 300 mg Wellbutrin
Supps ~ Culturellle, psylium seed, folic acid, magnesium, D3, K2, Calcium/Boron, multi-mineral.

mtgman
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1285
   Posted 6/16/2011 11:59 PM (GMT -6)   
why do you lose weight on wellbutrin? i heard zoloft works as well...anyone heard anything about that? why do these meds seem to help Crohn's?
37 year old male living in AZ. Diagnosed with Crohns at age of 15.
Currently on 20 mg prednisone. still taking Asacol. Done with Remicade- antibody level was over 8! Waiting for scope results to see about Humira or Cimzia.
In the middle of a bad flare now for 2 years...it's been one heck of a ride!

cupcakespinkgal
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 720
   Posted 6/17/2011 8:37 AM (GMT -6)   
One of the side effects listed for Wellbutrin is weight loss. Actually Wellbutrin is in a trial right now in combo with another drug to be used as a weight loss drug.

I don't know about any other anti-depressants working. Wellbutrin lowers TNF-alpha, which helps to reduce inflammation, so that is the theory why it helps in Crohn's.
Diagnosed with Crohn's in 1998, father has UC we were both diagnosed at 20 yrs old.
Previously on Remicade, Humira - No surgeries so far

Meds ~ Sulfasalazine 2/2xday, 300 mg Wellbutrin
Supps ~ Culturellle, psylium seed, folic acid, magnesium, D3, K2, Calcium/Boron, multi-mineral.

FecalTransplantForUC
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2013
Total Posts : 104
   Posted 2/8/2013 11:26 AM (GMT -6)   
I just wanted to thank you for this discussion thread. I have cured myself of Ulcerative Colitis using Fecal Transplants. However what finally brought symptoms to a rapid close was the addition of Bupropion 300 mg immediate release 3 times a day and Silenor (6 mg Doxepin). I started the Bupropion after finding this and a few other discussion threads from an internet search. A day after I added those drugs I had a normal, fully formed bowel movement, this at the same time I was tapering Prednisone. The first in years. I don't know if it is the TNF inhibition that did it, or by regulating emotions better it helped slow muscle spasms and diarrhea which helped the fecal transplants finish the job of restoring things to normal. 6 weeks later a colonoscopy revealed healthy patches in my colon where I had had pan colitis for over 10 years. After the first 3 months or so I transitioned to Buproption XL (once a day) and things continued going well.

18 months later I am still completely free of Colitis symptoms with normal bowel movements once or twice a day. This is amazing to me, because even before Colitis I had diarrhea or loose stool for much of my life. I did go back on Bupropion for seasonal depression, although will probably go off it in the spring.
For more about my story on how I used Ulcerative Colitis to permanently cure myself go to my website: www.fecaltransplant.org

Noulls
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 92
   Posted 2/10/2013 9:38 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for posting. I too tried Wellbutrin for Crohns. It did not put me in remission but reduced cramping significantly. I hope more people will post about this topic.

steph1311
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 2/10/2013 7:28 PM (GMT -6)   
I was wondering if Wellbutrin helped anyone else for their Crohns!! I stumbled on it helping me when I when on Wellutrin a couple years ago after my Mom had passed away and I was becoming more and more depressed. I like Wellbutrin because it helps with my energy levels some and I have constipation a lot and it seemed to help with it. I do still have loose stools mostly when I do go but for me it's better then not going at all which is my biggest problem. I was always wondering if I was the only one that found that it helped my Crohns some.

Joni222
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2013
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 3/1/2013 12:03 AM (GMT -6)   
Gunmart 1

My main problem with Crohn's is the inflammation upper and lower and all throughout my intestines. My question is how much of the Wellbutrin and how many times a day. I was on it for energy 300 mg once a day for energy but found I would collapse by dinner time. So I stopped it. Can you tell me how it is used for Crohn's and weight loss. I have constipation and can not get back to my original weight due to always being tired. I used to be so energetic and now I can barely do the housework.

Since diagnosed with Crohn's I also went from 130 to 190 lbs. at 5'1. I got my weight down to 165 but am stuck. I believe weight gain was from not eating so I force feed myself at least two meals some days but mostly protein shakes and bowl of cereal a day. So I have no drive, energy etc I believe due to not eating. The wellbutrin helps with energy but do you find yourself crashing on it.?

Hope you don't mind answering all my questions. Thanks so much.

Would love to learn more about the Wellbutrin, I am going to talk to the doctor about this.
______________________________________________________________
52 yr old diagnosed 2001, Crohn's disease, rectal and anal nerve damage, Hormone Replacement Therapy, Hypothrroid disease, Severe depression (loss of 4 siblings), herniated discs and degenerative disc disorder.

tinyfrog
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2013
Total Posts : 11
   Posted 3/1/2013 8:34 AM (GMT -6)   
This is very interesting considering wellbutrin is one of the meds I was taken off of shortly before I got sick. I dont have crohns but have UC that hasnt gone into remission at all. Im curious if wellbutrin helps with crohns could it possibly help ulcerative colitis too? My psychiatrist has been considering switching me back to wellbutrin anyway (instead of taking aplenzin) because it seemed to work a bit better for my depression.
Sept. 6, 2012 - Brain surgery - removal of colloid cyst of 3rd ventricle causing hydrocephalus
Sept. 26, 2012 - Hospitalized for C.Diff. w/ sepsis
January 2013 - diagnosed w/ Ulcerative Colitis
Meds: asacol, aplenzin, xanax
Recently Discontinued Meds: Lialda
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