Fast forward - 13 March 2012

A DECADE ago the anti-smoking drug Zyban (bupropion) was front page news due to a spate of overdoses and controversy over whether it caused depression and personality or behavioural changes. 

Zyban was entered on the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG) in August 2000. 

Commenting on the safety of the drug in 2002, emergency physician Dr Richard Paoloni from Sydney’s Concord Repatriation Hospital said there had been three overdoses a week, most believed to be intentional.

Ten years on Dr Paoloni says the drug’s use has declined progressively along with the number of overdose cases.

“Admissions for Zyban overdose have been exceedingly rare for several years,” he said.

More than one million units of Zyban have been dispensed on the PBS.

Until February 2012 there were 1946 suspected adverse reactions reported to the TGA. Of these,