Background Weight gain due to antipsychotics is a challenging clinical problem because, to date, no effective pharmacological strategies have been found. Bupropion is often used in people with schizophrenia for smoking cessation and is well tolerated. However, studies on its use as weight loss treatment are scarce. The aim of the study was to examine the effectiveness of bupropion as a single weight loss treatment in overweight individuals maintained on long-term olanzapine or risperidone. Methods This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, 8-week study included 26 overweight (body mass index ≥27 kg/m2) individuals with schizophrenia maintained on olanzapine (10-20 mg/d) or risperidone (2-4 mg/d). Participants were randomly allocated to a study group that received bupropion (150-300 mg/d) or to a placebo group. The positive and Negative Syndrome Scale and the Clinical Global Impression-Severity Scale were used to assess severity of psychosis at baseline and end of study (8 weeks). Results Bupropion addition, but not placebo, was associated with a significant reduction in body weight. Severity of psychotic symptoms was not altered in either group. Conclusions The results demonstrate the efficacy of bupropion, compared with placebo, in patients maintained on chronic treatment with olanzapine or risperidone, both known to be major contributors to significant weight gain.
- Weight management