Appropriate Zyban® dosage can depend on a patient’s age, underlying medical conditions, and existing medications. This drug is an antidepressant typically used to help people quit smoking. Patients start taking the drug while still smoking to build up sufficient concentrations in the body. After approximately one week, they can stop smoking. If the medication does not effectively support cessation within seven weeks, a care provider may recommend stopping treatment and considering other options.
The typical base starting Zyban® dosage is 150 milligrams once a day for three to four days to allow the patient to get accustomed to the medication. Then, patients can transition to a 150 milligram dose twice a day. Exceeding this dosage is not recommended and at least eight hours should be allowed to pass between doses. Patients can continue taking the medication for the duration of a cessation program unless they experience complications or side effects.
Before a patient quits smoking, a care provider may conduct a brief interview to collect a medical history and identify any specific issues of concern. One thing to consider with a Zyban® dosage recommendation is the patient’s liver and kidney health. Impairment in either of these organs may necessitate a dosage reduction or could force the care provider to consider alternative medications to protect the patient’s health. A history of seizures, or taking medications known to case seizures, can also be a contraindication.
Patients should discuss all their existing health conditions with a care provider, even if they are not currently in treatment, because these could impact the Zyban® dosage. In addition, they should provide a complete list of the medications and supplements taken, including drugs purchased over the counter. Some drugs can interact badly with the Zyban®. The patient may need to stop taking these medications temporarily or could need to adjust dose timing to reduce the risk of drug reactions.
Once on an appropriate Zyban® dosage, patients can discuss side effects with their care providers. Some side effects may be significant enough that the patient needs to stop the drug, adjust the dose, or take another medication to counteract the problem. In other cases, the care provider may recommend continuing with treatment and tolerating the side effects for at least seven weeks to see if the Zyban® will be effective. Frequent counseling sessions and other support for people who are quitting smoking can increase the chances of success, and can help patients identify complications as early as possible.