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Wellbutrin Tinnitus


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#1 TroutMask

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Posted 18 February 2011 - 10:53 PM

I recently abandoned my second attempt at a Wellbutrin trial due to the development of tinnitus early in my treatment. After being at 150 mg. XL (generic) for seven days and noticing nothing unusual, I moved to 300 mg. XL (generic) on the eighth day, as prescribed. Shortly after taking my first dose at the increased strength, I noticed a high-pitched ringing in my ears. I contacted my psychiatrist, who told me that he had this happen with another patient, and when they switched to the name brand the ringing went away. Terrified by this development, I stopped the medication altogether.

Still experiencing the ringing a week later after my last dose, I saw an audiologist, who said (after a full range of tests) that my hearing is completely normal, and also an ENT, who said that because the tinnitus was medication-induced (instead of noise) combined with the fact that I have suffered no hearing loss, that it is likely that the ringing will abate over time.

For twelve days after my only dose of 300 mg. XL, the ringing in my ears was intense and agonizing. Two days ago, the ringing began to subside and it is now not as loud as it was previously. However it is still present, and I worry that I won't experience further progress. It hasn't helped that I've had a miserable cold the past four days, so who knows what role that plays in all this.

I'm getting ready to leave on a family vacation Monday and really don't want this worry hanging over me. If anyone else has experienced tinnitus with Wellbutrin and had it go away over a period of time, I'd sure like to hear from you. It's not so much the ringing that bothers me, it's the fear of permanence.

Thanks~

#2 BetterOff

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Posted 18 February 2011 - 11:27 PM

Hello, just wanted to say tinnitus is normal both as an intial side effect and as a withdrawal side effect and yes indeed it does go away... if you are only on day 12 of withdrawal, it can take a months for it to fully fade and sometimes a re-occurance happens but as time goes by it does go away.
If you ever start another AD, please dont abandon it, i think most *all* of us have this problem, and its bothersome but not to such a large degree that warrants discontinued use of the ad because it can take months to smooth out on side effects from starting or stopping an AD.
People have to brave out the initial side effects which are very hard on you to be honest but after 2 or 3 weeks they slowly start to subside as you feel better and better, you have to allow 6 to 8 weeks for an AD to do it stuff and sometimes even a bit longer for tinnitus to finally go away, but its worth it in the long run!
Good luck and best wishes.
fyi, I have experienced tinnitus every time I started or withdrew from an AD.
Information supplied on Depression Forums by members should not be relied upon and is not a substitute for medical advice from a health professional or doctor.

#3 TroutMask

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Posted 18 February 2011 - 11:43 PM

Hello, just wanted to say tinnitus is normal both as an intial side effect and as a withdrawal side effect and yes indeed it does go away... if you are only on day 12 of withdrawal, it can take a months for it to fully fade and sometimes a re-occurance happens but as time goes by it does go away.
If you ever start another AD, please dont abandon it, i think most *all* of us have this problem, and its bothersome but not to such a large degree that warrants discontinued use of the ad because it can take months to smooth out on side effects from starting or stopping an AD.
People have to brave out the initial side effects which are very hard on you to be honest but after 2 or 3 weeks they slowly start to subside as you feel better and better, you have to allow 6 to 8 weeks for an AD to do it stuff and sometimes even a bit longer for tinnitus to finally go away, but its worth it in the long run!
Good luck and best wishes.
fyi, I have experienced tinnitus every time I started or withdrew from an AD.

Wow, what a comforting account you have written. I guess I didn't realize this side-effect was so prevalent - it really has freaked me out. I've taken Remeron for years and it is my wonder drug, and I was hoping to add the Welly in attempt to fully resolve my low-level depression. I'm just not sure if I'm willing to endure the side-effects of another add-on, and may choose to leave well enough alone, but it sure is nice to hear that there is a good chance that my residual tinnitus will indeed resolve. Thanks much for taking the time to post.

Edited by TroutMask, 18 February 2011 - 11:46 PM.


#4 Ronnie

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Posted 20 February 2011 - 12:27 PM

The ringing in my ears was pretty bad on 300mg XL generic, now I take 150mg XL and I don't notice it at all. Once in a great while I might get a slight 'ting' sound that lasts just a few seconds to a minute but that's it.

Current meds: Lexapro 10mg, Wellbutrin SR 150mg 2x day
 
As needed: Restoril or Trazadone for sleep.  Klonopin infrequently, Nuvigil for shift work.
 
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#5 TroutMask

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Posted 20 February 2011 - 10:37 PM

The ringing in my ears was pretty bad on 300mg XL generic, now I take 150mg XL and I don't notice it at all. Once in a great while I might get a slight 'ting' sound that lasts just a few seconds to a minute but that's it.


Yeah, I didn't get any ringing at 150 mg. It wasn't until my first dose at 300 mg. that it began.

#6 danW

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Posted 21 February 2011 - 03:12 PM

I had very bad tinitus when i was on 450 mg generic. when i reduced it to 300 mg the problem was far less but still there. I switched to the brand name Wellbutrin XL and the problem has mostly gone away. I only get tinitus when I'm under alot of stress or if i haven't gotten enough sleep.

#7 TomAdled

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 08:50 AM



I've had a pretty bad tinnitus since I got an ear infection in my 20's.


I tried Wellbutrin at just 150mg/d recently (because everything causes me RLS) and my tinnitus volume/intensity went up soon after starting. Very hesistant to stop the Wellbutrin cause I tried everything to help me deal with the RLS caused by the various SSRI/SNRI to no avail.


But the tinnitus continued to get worse on the Wellbutrin so I quit it today.


How does the Wellbutrin do this? If I knew that I would know more about my tinnitus?

#8 Spiritual_Wanderer

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 09:49 AM

This thread has made me curious about why medications cause tinnitus. I looked it up and it could be due to ototoxicity - which means a medicine is toxic to the coclear or balance structures in the ear. It also said taking antioxidants before could help. "Free radical damage is central to lost hearing or vestibular (balance) disturbances." So it would appear that Wellbutrin can or does affect the inner hairs of the ear.

I have gotten a bit of the ringing, but nothing that affects my daily routine. Aspirin and Motrin and other SSRIs can cause tinnitus. Avoid stimulants, like coffee and decrease intake of salt.

"A common cause of tinnitus is inner ear cell damage. Tiny, delicate hairs in your inner ear move in relation to the pressure of sound waves. This triggers ear cells to release an electrical signal through a nerve from your ear (auditory nerve) to your brain. Your brain interprets these signals as sound. If the hairs inside your inner ear are bent or broken, they can "leak" random electrical impulses to your brain, causing tinnitus."

Hope it goes away for you!


Many Blessings,
SW
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#9 TroutMask

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Posted 24 February 2011 - 10:33 PM

I'm now at three weeks since the ringing began, and it really hasn't subsided much. I think I've gotten much more used to it to the point where it doesn't really bother me a whole lot unless I'm in a quiet place, but man, I sure hope this goes away eventually!...

Edited by TroutMask, 24 February 2011 - 10:34 PM.


#10 TomAdled

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 10:49 AM

This thread has made me curious about why medications cause tinnitus. I looked it up and it could be due to ototoxicity - which means a medicine is toxic to the coclear or balance structures in the ear. It also said taking antioxidants before could help. "Free radical damage is central to lost hearing or vestibular (balance) disturbances." So it would appear that Wellbutrin can or does affect the inner hairs of the ear.

I have gotten a bit of the ringing, but nothing that affects my daily routine. Aspirin and Motrin and other SSRIs can cause tinnitus. Avoid stimulants, like coffee and decrease intake of salt.

"A common cause of tinnitus is inner ear cell damage. Tiny, delicate hairs in your inner ear move in relation to the pressure of sound waves. This triggers ear cells to release an electrical signal through a nerve from your ear (auditory nerve) to your brain. Your brain interprets these signals as sound. If the hairs inside your inner ear are bent or broken, they can "leak" random electrical impulses to your brain, causing tinnitus."

Hope it goes away for you!


I think there are two different things here. There are things that cause tinnitus, possibly including long term use of aspirin, NSAI, or SSRI, and there are things that make it temporarily worse such as stimulants and some drugs.

I don't know what the long term effects of Wellbutrin are, but it seems to have a quick, temporary impact on the tinnitus. My tinnitus got noticably worse very quickly after I started the drug and seems to be headed back to normal now that I have stopped it. So, I doubt this involves anything change in the hairs in my ear - I think it would involve a chemical change that affects my perception of the tinnitus.

It is the same with alcohol. When I drink it makes the tinnitus worse for about 12 hours, but then it gets better. If I knew the mechanism by which alchohol and Wellbutrin made my tinnitus worse then I might be able to find a substance that made it better, and I could avoid trying other anti-depressants that will have the same effect. (I believe the term 'ototoxic' is just a generic way of saying that it is bad for the ear/hearing.)




#11 Imaworrywart

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Posted 26 February 2011 - 03:15 AM

I can only WISH the ear ringing would go away. I've been on Wellbutrin XL 150 mg for about 7 weeks and the ringing in my ears has never gone away. I am really now quite deaf and it's noticeable by others who have always known me as having excellent hearing. Will it truly go away? I can only hope. I'm getting tired of sounding like a lightbulb.......watt? watt?? watt??? WHAT!!!
A wonderful hope for the future carries me through but sometimes living in the moment stumps me.


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#12 Laggard

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 12:50 PM

I've got permanent ringing in my ears caused by years of way too loud music so I have no idea if my ringing is actually caused by Wellbutrin.

#13 TomAdled

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 01:12 PM

I can only WISH the ear ringing would go away. I've been on Wellbutrin XL 150 mg for about 7 weeks and the ringing in my ears has never gone away...

Sorry, when I said it was temporary, I meant that it dissipated after I stopped the Wellbutrin. I only lasted about one week on the Wellbutrin before the increased ringing threatened to put me over the edge.


I find tinnitus to be more dangerous then any other health issue I've encountered. It has the ability to destroy your concentration and make you crazy. I would gladly give up my hearing entirely to be rid of this. For this reason, even a small change in my perception of the tinnitus has a big impact, and in the case of the Wellbutrin the change was pretty big. I am disappointed about this because the other anti-depressants give me restless leg syndrome, but I would much rather suffer RLS then have the tinnitus get worse.

I believe that some of these things impact the ringing by affecting the blood cells or by impacting your sleep. For example, salt is a vasoconstrictor and this is known to make tinnitus (or the perception of it) worse. The reason they recommend Niacin (B3) for tinnitus is because it is a vasodilator. Alcohol can impact your sleep and poor sleep is also known to affect tinnitus perception. Anti-depressants can affect your blood cells and your sleep so these are two possible mechanisms by which they can affect your tinnitus. Hopefully, once you go off the anti-depressant and give your body time to return to a baseline the tinnitus will also return to its previous levels.

Can anti-depressants actually make your tinnitus (and not just your perception of it) worse? I have no idea. I would have thought the answer was no since tinnitus is an aspect of hearing loss and I haven't heard of anti-depressants doing that. However, the latest research indicates that tinnitus is the combination of hearing loss + a brain malfunction that causes it to generate noise in the spectrum where it no longer detects any. Perhaps anti-depressants play a role in that brain malfunction?






#14 lindahurt

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 01:22 PM

So sorry Iamworrywart about the ringing in your ears. I can see how annoying it has been to you. I don't know if it will stop but can only hope it will for you. This surprises me about Wellbutrin. If it doesn't stop I think you should let your doctor know that it continues to persists.

Lindahurt

I can only WISH the ear ringing would go away. I've been on Wellbutrin XL 150 mg for about 7 weeks and the ringing in my ears has never gone away. I am really now quite deaf and it's noticeable by others who have always known me as having excellent hearing. Will it truly go away? I can only hope. I'm getting tired of sounding like a lightbulb.......watt? watt?? watt??? WHAT!!!


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#15 TroutMask

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 06:17 PM

Hello, just wanted to say tinnitus is normal both as an intial side effect and as a withdrawal side effect and yes indeed it does go away... if you are only on day 12 of withdrawal, it can take a months for it to fully fade and sometimes a re-occurance happens but as time goes by it does go away.
If you ever start another AD, please dont abandon it, i think most *all* of us have this problem, and its bothersome but not to such a large degree that warrants discontinued use of the ad because it can take months to smooth out on side effects from starting or stopping an AD.
People have to brave out the initial side effects which are very hard on you to be honest but after 2 or 3 weeks they slowly start to subside as you feel better and better, you have to allow 6 to 8 weeks for an AD to do it stuff and sometimes even a bit longer for tinnitus to finally go away, but its worth it in the long run!
Good luck and best wishes.
fyi, I have experienced tinnitus every time I started or withdrew from an AD.


Well, tomorrow will be one month since I began experiencing tinnitus as a result of a single dose of Buproprion XL 300 mg. The intensity faded after the first week, but hasn't faded further, and today it seems to be ringing more loudly again. I keep coming back to this thread for comfort and hope, but man...

#16 Spiritual_Wanderer

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Posted 03 March 2011 - 08:59 AM

Well, tomorrow will be one month since I began experiencing tinnitus as a result of a single dose of Buproprion XL 300 mg. The intensity faded after the first week, but hasn't faded further, and today it seems to be ringing more loudly again. I keep coming back to this thread for comfort and hope, but man...

Wow, I really hope it goes away soon! I had some of it last night, but I also took Benadryl for the first time to help me sleep, so it's hard to say exactly what caused it. It was I think louder than I remember it being in the past, but I sleep with a fan so the "white noise" helps drown it out.

Bummer. It's very strange a single dose would do this...in my view.
Many Blessings,
SW
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#17 xtreme88

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Posted 22 March 2011 - 03:06 PM

This tinnitus is ridiculous,

I got this in april 2010 after trying Citalopram and Serequel for anxiety

my biggest problem in life was anxiety that was it.....it finally got to me in april 2010 and the doc gave me those meds to try within 1 week on them I got ringing in my ears, had no idea what it was went back to the doc and they said it can be a side effect its common on anti depressants..

anyways i been off of that stuff for along time but took ativan for along time and later clonzepam to help me to stay calm because tinnitus drives you crazy ! hard to sleep think, and just have fun in life.....

anyways so here i am 2011 march...and i still have the ringing but alot more faded but still lingering around, I dont have anxiety anymore, but i have the stress of tinnitus, I have done everything i can, im always calm and yet the ringing just goes on and on,

i have stopped clonzepam now for a few weeks, and im going to just go on with no meds at all....I still have hope it may go away one day but im 11 months in now....its a nightmare that i can tell you.

I have over this long run come across people who have had it go away in 6 months 13 months up to 2 yrs and longer and it has gone so there is hope, but its hard when you have the fear of it being permanent.

you can go on facebook to the ata page or search tinnitus and joing the american tinnitus page and there are alot of people there to help.
I hope to tell tinnitus goes way.

#18 TroutMask

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Posted 24 April 2011 - 08:21 PM

Well, I'm at 11 weeks since a single dose of Buproprion 300 mg. XL began my bout with tinnitus, and the ringing still remains. It has, for the most part, grown fainter, and there are times that I barely notice it (like when I wake up), but others when it still screams pretty loudly (I seem to get this most when I'm around a lot of electronic machines, and I'm not sure what to make of this). My tinnitus has gone from agonizing to mostly a minor annoyance, but I sure hope that I continue to improve. I've tried supplementing with zinc and ginkgo biloba, have been really taking care of myself (have been working out and eating right and have lost 15 pounds), but I'm not sure if any of this has really helped my T. I'm still on 33 mg. nightly of Remeron and my mood has been pretty good, and I've decided to not add any other AD's until my T fades more, when and if that ever happens. I remain encouraged by other accounts I have read of people whose T has subsided over long periods of time. But I still wring my hands in disbelief that this whole thing was caused by a single dose of medication...

Edited by TroutMask, 24 April 2011 - 08:22 PM.


#19 denair60

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 04:00 PM

I recently abandoned my second attempt at a Wellbutrin trial due to the development of tinnitus early in my treatment. After being at 150 mg. XL (generic) for seven days and noticing nothing unusual, I moved to 300 mg. XL (generic) on the eighth day, as prescribed. Shortly after taking my first dose at the increased strength, I noticed a high-pitched ringing in my ears. I contacted my psychiatrist, who told me that he had this happen with another patient, and when they switched to the name brand the ringing went away. Terrified by this development, I stopped the medication altogether.

Still experiencing the ringing a week later after my last dose, I saw an audiologist, who said (after a full range of tests) that my hearing is completely normal, and also an ENT, who said that because the tinnitus was medication-induced (instead of noise) combined with the fact that I have suffered no hearing loss, that it is likely that the ringing will abate over time.

For twelve days after my only dose of 300 mg. XL, the ringing in my ears was intense and agonizing. Two days ago, the ringing began to subside and it is now not as loud as it was previously. However it is still present, and I worry that I won't experience further progress. It hasn't helped that I've had a miserable cold the past four days, so who knows what role that plays in all this.

I'm getting ready to leave on a family vacation Monday and really don't want this worry hanging over me. If anyone else has experienced tinnitus with Wellbutrin and had it go away over a period of time, I'd sure like to hear from you. It's not so much the ringing that bothers me, it's the fear of permanence.

Thanks~


I have so much empathy with your experience . I too, during my second try with Wellbutrin, stopped it after only one month and I had every intention to go the long haul for relief. During my second week with Wellbutrin, I developed an agonizing headache and the back of my neck felt on fire and so tense. After this, ringing, buzzing in my ears. Never had it before Wellbutrin. My GP said he had never heard of this symptom and sent me to an ENT. My hearing, ears, were normal. One month after I stopped Wellbutrin, the Tinnitus is still with me daily. I will surely post if this goes away, because I would not want anyone to face this alone. This is an agonizing, life changing side effect and it is certainly not anyones' imagination.

#20 Mda

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 01:18 PM

I recently abandoned my second attempt at a Wellbutrin trial due to the development of tinnitus early in my treatment. After being at 150 mg. XL (generic) for seven days and noticing nothing unusual, I moved to 300 mg. XL (generic) on the eighth day, as prescribed. Shortly after taking my first dose at the increased strength, I noticed a high-pitched ringing in my ears. I contacted my psychiatrist, who told me that he had this happen with another patient, and when they switched to the name brand the ringing went away. Terrified by this development, I stopped the medication altogether.

Still experiencing the ringing a week later after my last dose, I saw an audiologist, who said (after a full range of tests) that my hearing is completely normal, and also an ENT, who said that because the tinnitus was medication-induced (instead of noise) combined with the fact that I have suffered no hearing loss, that it is likely that the ringing will abate over time.

For twelve days after my only dose of 300 mg. XL, the ringing in my ears was intense and agonizing. Two days ago, the ringing began to subside and it is now not as loud as it was previously. However it is still present, and I worry that I won't experience further progress. It hasn't helped that I've had a miserable cold the past four days, so who knows what role that plays in all this.

I'm getting ready to leave on a family vacation Monday and really don't want this worry hanging over me. If anyone else has experienced tinnitus with Wellbutrin and had it go away over a period of time, I'd sure like to hear from you. It's not so much the ringing that bothers me, it's the fear of permanence.

Thanks~


Hello,

I had an experience very similar to yours: I too took 150 mg for 7 days, then a single dose of 300 mg and then I stopped it. At first, I was mostly worried about other side effects, and I just interpreted the noise in my head as some sort of hangover effect, but now that it has been 6 weeks and the tinnitus is still with me, I am really getting afraid this won't go away... Please let me know if you've had any improvements in your condition or if you have any ideas of specialists or treatments for this.

One thing that I've noticed about my tinnitus is that at least one component of it seems to be connected to my blood pressure: the intensity of the noise changes as I move my head and, unfortunately, it seems to get worse when I yawn and lie down to try to sleep, and it seems to follow the same rhythm as my heartbeat. The other component is a constant high pitch of lower volume. (My hearing was tested and it is fine too.) Caffeine and alcohol seem to make it worse in the ensuing days, but sadly I haven't found anything that would make it decrease in intensity yet. I have been taking Centrum and vitamin B supplements, but no noticeable changes so far. Next step will be trying white noise devices to see if I at least can get better sleep, and some homeopathic drugs that were suggested to me, but the list is getting shorter, and so is my hope of resolving this this.

If anyone else has any suggestions or related stories, please share!

Thank you.

Edited by MDA, 04 December 2011 - 01:25 PM.





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