Antidepressant Drug Quenches Craving For A Smoke

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Suzy-Cohen-1Dear Pharmacist,
My pharmacist told me that my antidepressant, Wellbutrin, is the same medicine that my husband takes to stop smoking. Is this true?
M.M., Jacksonville, Florida
Answer:  Yes. It’s a surprise to most people when they hear this. But there are a many drugs that are cleverly marketed to different populations and sold under different trade names. This is done because a particular substance could have various beneficial effects on the body. In your case, the active ingredient in Wellbutrin is the same compound in Zyban, a popular prescription remedy used to stop smoking. Dosing is similar with these two drugs and pricing is too…about $120 per month. Interestingly, insurance companies don’t mind paying for Wellbutrin, but don’t hold your breath with Zyban. Almost all insurance companies make you pay for that yourself.