Bupropion's (Zyban(®) SR) effectiveness to treat symptoms experienced in marihuana withdrawal was tested in a double-blind, placebo-controlled study with chronic, heavy marihuana users. Participants maintained their usual marihuana intake until Quit Day after which they were required to cease intake of THC products for 14 days. A Withdrawal Discomfort Score revealed that for 7 days immediately following cessation, placebo-treated subjects reported more symptoms than bupropion-treated subjects. Self-reported craving for marihuana increased for the placebo-treated group but not for those treated with bupropion. Measures of sleep and cognitive performance were not different between the two groups. Participants in the bupropion treatment arm were more likely to complete the study than those randomized to the placebo arm (50% completion for bupropion vs. 33% completion for placebo). These results suggest that bupropion may be useful for alleviating marihuana withdrawal symptoms and be useful in subject retention during long-term cessation programs.
Keywords: bupropion; cognitive performance; marihuana; pharmacotherapy; sleep; withdrawal.