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Zyban

Zyban is a prescription drug that helps smokers quit smoking. The drug's active ingredient, bupropion hydrochloride, modifies the two neurotransmitters in the brain that control nicotine addiction and withdrawal urges, reducing a patient's need to smoke. It is generally prescribed over a two-month duration, in which time users find that their cravings for cigarettes are dulled, so helping them to break relapse cycles when in rehab.

Unlike nicotine patches which just provide a substitute for nicotine from cigarettes, Zyban is the first drug of its kind to work on a neurological level. The active ingredient increases dopamine and noradrenaline, two chemicals that control emotion and mood in the brain, helping to break nicotine craving.

The safety of Zyban has been called into question in the past. Of 513,000 patients who had taken Zyban by April 2002, nearly two years after it becoming available on the NHS, 7472 people had reported an adverse reaction. The majority of these reactions were mild, ranging from a dry mouth and nausea to difficulty sleeping. However, 46 people experienced fatal seizures or induced epilepsy fits which were fatal. This might sound a high number, but when compared to the number of people who die every day from smoking-related diseases (300+), Zyban represents a very low risk strategy to help people quit smoking.

For more information on Zyban please use the resources on our site.


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