Does buspar cause weight loss

Buspar Weight Gain: Is It a Side Effect?

If you frequently experience anxiety, you’re not alone. Roughly 19.1% of U.S. adults have an anxiety disorder. 

Based on clinical studies that have been conducted on the anti-anxiety medication – Buspar, weight gain is one side effect that can occur. Very few people experience this effect, however.

This article will cover Buspar’s impact on weight gain and weight loss, side effects, and when to see a medical professional about issues relating to this drug.

What is Buspar (Buspirone)?

Buspar, also called buspirone hydrochloride (HCL), is a generic drug people take to combat anxiety.

It also helps people relax, worry less, and think more clearly.

What Does it Treat?

Buspar is a commonly-prescribed anxiolytic medication used to treat anxiety disorders such as generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). 

More than 10 million Americans use Buspar to treat their anxiety, as well as physical symptoms of anxiety such as fear, tension, irritability, and dizziness.

Those with an anxiety disorder or who experience anxiety can have any of the following symptoms:

  • Nervousness
  • Restlessness
  • Tenseness
  • Rapid breathing
  • Sweating
  • A feeling of impending doom or danger
  • Trembling
  • Weakness or tiredness
  • Difficulty with concentration and sleeping
  • Stomachaches and headaches
  • An urge to avoid activities that trigger anxiety

Buspar is a daily, commonly prescribed in addition to other drugs you may already be taking, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which are frequently prescribed to treat depression.

While benzodiazepines like Xanax have sedative and muscle-relaxing effects in treating anxiety, Buspar doesn’t. 

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Can Buspar Cause Weight Gain?

Just between 0.1 and 1% of the people who use Buspar medication experience weight gain.

Most people who take the drug won’t experience a clinically relevant gain or loss in weight, which is defined as a 7% weight change from their baseline weight.

During an anxiety attack, there are a number of symptoms that you may experience, which can lead to weight gain. These include:

  • Increased cortisol levels
  • Fat deposit in the stomach
  • More fat depositions, resulting in adiposity (being overweight)
  • Recovery from loss of appetite during anxiety

Can Buspar Cause Weight Loss? 

Just as anxiety can cause you to eat more, it can also cause you to eat less.

Anxiety symptoms such as low appetite and decreased metabolism can result in weight loss.

A change in weight is more likely to be due to the anxiety you’re experiencing, rather than as a side effect of Buspar.

If you’re already overweight, weight loss may be an indirect side effect of using Buspar to treat anxiety.

If you’ve been turning to food as a coping mechanism for anxiety and using Buspar has proven to be effective in treating it, the need to overeat would lessen. Subsequently, weight loss may occur.

Additionally, adverse effects of Buspar, such as nausea and mild stomach aches, could result in weight loss. 

Vomiting and diarrhea from the use of the medication could result in water loss and, consequently, weight loss.

Other Factors That Can Cause Weight Gain

Although Buspar is unlikely to contribute directly to weight gain, other effects of improving anxiety may explain why you see a change in weight. These include:

  • Mood changes
  • Improvement of cognitive function
  • Hormonal changes affecting prolactin and growth hormone
  • Change in resting metabolic rate 

Side Effects

Side effects of taking Buspar include:

  • Nervousness or restlessness
  • Drowsiness
  • Lightheadedness
  • Hives
  • Swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

1-10% of people who take Buspar also experience side effects such as:

  • Central nervous system effects (such as headache, nervousness, excitement, confusion, dizziness, drowsiness, and disturbed sleep)
  • Gastrointestinal effects (such as nausea, diarrhea, or upset stomach)
  • Chest pain
  • Skin rashes
  • Blurred vision
  • Ringing in the ears

If you have a condition that affects the functioning of your liver, your liver may not be able to break down Buspar effectively, and this will lead to unwanted side effects.

If you have kidney problems, your body may not be able to excrete the drug properly. 

To avoid preventable, unwanted side effects, tell your doctor about any medications or supplements that you’re taking to make sure that they won’t interact with Buspar.

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When to See a Medical Professional

Before you take Buspar, a doctor will need to review your medical history to ensure that you don’t have any contraindications to taking Buspar, such as an allergy or hypersensitivity to the drug. 

If you have diabetes, your doctor may choose not to prescribe Buspar since the drug can affect blood glucose levels.

Speak with your doctor immediately if you’re experiencing chest pain, shortness of breath, lightheadedness, or faintness after taking the medication.

Similarly, talk with a doctor if you’ve experienced an anxiety attack with any of these symptoms:

  • Feelings of danger, panic, or dread
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Sweating
  • Trembling or severe chills
  • Nervousness or restlessness
  • Tiredness or weakness
  • Difficulty with focusing and concentration
  • Hyperventilation

If you overdose and experience any of the following symptoms, call the Poison Helpline at 1-800-222-1222.

Buspar overdoses have not resulted in any reported deaths, but symptoms may include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Drowsiness or sleepiness
  • Dizziness
  • Upset stomach

If you’re having a mental health emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. You can also get free 24/7 support from a suicide and crisis expert by calling or texting 988. If you’d prefer to chat online, you can chat with a suicide and crisis expert by visiting the Lifeline Chat.

How K Health Can Help

Think you might need a prescription for buspar (buspirone)?

K Health has clinicians standing by 24/7 to evaluate your symptoms and determine if citalopram is right for you.

Get started with our free assessment, which will tell you in minutes if treatment could be a good fit. If yes, we’ll connect you right to a clinician who can prescribe medication and have it shipped right to your door.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Buspar Affect Your Appetite?

Buspar can indirectly lead to weight gain through changes to your eating habits as your anxiety improves. An increased appetite is a noted side effect of Busparin in less than 1% of cases, but when it does occur, it can lead to more frequent or larger meals, thus contributing to weight gain. Clinical trials on the use of Buspar in people with Autism to reduce irritability demonstrated that increased appetite was actually one of the more common side effects in that population. To lower the chances of losing or gaining while taking Buspar, be conscious of your eating habits while on the medication. Track the number of calories you consume each day to help determine if you’re eating the right amount of food to achieve the appropriate body mass.

Does Buspar Affect Metabolism?

Stress and anxiety can lead to weight loss by changing your appetite and metabolism. Your body’s cortisol levels rise in response to stress, potentially increasing your appetite and increasing fat (adipose) buildup in the stomach. This can ultimately lead to weight gain (adiposity).

K Health articles are all written and reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, or PharmDs and are for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.

K Health has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We avoid using tertiary references.

  • A Review of the Neuropharmacology of Bupropion, a Dual Norepinephrine and Dopamine Reuptake Inhibitor. (2004).

  • Any Anxiety Disorder. (n.d.).

  • Bupropion: a systematic review and meta-analysis of effectiveness as an antidepressant. (2016).

  • Buspirone. (2022).

  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder (n.d.).

  • Which anti-anxiety medication is right for me? (2019).

Does BuSpar® Cause Weight Gain?

Medically reviewed by Kristin Hall, FNP

Written by Our Editorial Team

Last updated 6/30/2022

More than 23 percent of all US adult women experience an anxiety disorder on an annual basis, making anxiety one of the most common mental health issues.

If you’ve been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, your healthcare provider may suggest taking the medication BuSpar® to control your symptoms.

Many medications for anxiety and depression are associated with changes in your body weight, including weight gain and weight loss. 

Does BuSpar cause weight gain? The good news is that there isn’t much of a link between the use of BuSpar and changes in body composition. In fact, in clinical trials of BuSpar, weight gain and weight loss were both extremely infrequent side effects.

Below, we’ve explained what BuSpar is, as well as how it’s used as a treatment for generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and other forms of anxiety.

We’ve also talked about why you shouldn’t feel overly concerned about weight gain while you’re using BuSpar to treat anxiety, as well as what you can do to maintain a healthy weight while you take part in treatment.

What Is BuSpar?

BuSpar is an anti-anxiety medication. It’s used to manage anxiety disorders and as a short-term treatment for anxiety symptoms that develop from time to time. BuSpar is also sometimes used as an augmentation agent (meaning a second medication) for treating depression.

The active ingredient in BuSpar is buspirone, which belongs to a class of medications known as azapirones. Experts believe that buspirone reduces feelings of anxiety by targeting receptors in your brain and body, including serotonin 5HT1a and 5HT2 and dopamine D2 autoreceptors.

BuSpar offers several advantages over other medications for anxiety, such as benzodiazepines and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).

The first of these advantages is that BuSpar isn’t associated with physical dependence, allowing it to be used with a lower risk of forming habits.

The second is that BuSpar doesn’t cause the withdrawal symptoms that are typically associated with benzodiazepines and SSRIs.

Because of these advantages, BuSpar is often used as a second-line treatment when SSRIs and other medications aren’t effective at controlling the symptoms of anxiety.

BuSpar is currently available as a generic medication and comes as an oral tablet. It’s generally used at a dosage of 15 to 60mg per day to treat generalized anxiety disorder, divided into two to three doses.

Does BuSpar Cause Weight Gain?

Many medications for anxiety and depression are associated with some level of weight gain. For example, changes in appetite and body weight are common side effects of some SSRIs, as well as many tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs).  

Unlike other medications for anxiety and depression, BuSpar generally isn’t associated with any significant degree of drug-induced weight gain.

In clinical trials of BuSpar, researchers found that changes in body weight, including weight gain and weight loss, were infrequent side effects, meaning they occurred in less than one percent of study participants.

Because of this, BuSpar is often referred to as a “weight neutral” medication for managing the symptoms of anxiety.

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Side Effects of BuSpar

Although BuSpar isn’t associated with an increased risk of weight gain, it can cause other side effects. Many of these are mild side effects that improve over time, although some side effects of BuSpar may be persistent or bothersome.

The most common side effect associated with BuSpar is dizziness, which affects more than 10 percent of people prescribed this medication.

Other common adverse effects of BuSpar include: 

  • Abnormal dreams

  • Confusion

  • Drowsiness

  • Ataxia (lack of coordination)

  • Excitement

  • Headaches

  • Nervousness

  • Burning or prickling sensations

  • Outbursts of anger

  • Numbness

  • Sore throat

  • Blurred vision

  • Chest pain

  • Tinnitus

  • Skin rash

  • Sweating

  • Nasal congestion

  • Nausea

  • Diarrhea

  • Muscle pain and/or joint pain

  • Physical weakness

  • Tremor

  • Elevated liver enzymes

Unlike many other medications used to treat anxiety and depression, BuSpar usually isn’t linked to sexual dysfunction or other sexual side effects.

Many side effects of BuSpar may improve over time. Inform your healthcare provider if you have any persistent or severe side effects while using BuSpar. 

Although BuSpar is typically a safe and effective medication when it’s used as prescribed, it can interact with other medications and potentially cause safety issues.

Medications and substances that can interact with BuSpar and generic buspirone include:

  • Anticonvulsants such as carbamazepine, phenobarbital and phenytoin

  • Other medications for treating anxiety, such as benzodiazepines

  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)

  • Serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs)

  • Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs)

  • Tricyclic and tetracyclic antidepressants (TCAs and TeCAs)

  • Other medications for treating depression

  • Antibiotics such as erythromycin

  • Pain medications and narcotics

  • Sleeping pills and tranquilizers

  • Muscle relaxant medications

Other over-the-counter and prescription medications may also interact with BuSpar. To limit your risk of drug interactions, make sure to inform your healthcare provider about all medications you currently use or have recently used before starting treatment with BuSpar.

It’s especially important to inform your healthcare provider if you’ve used an MAOI within the last 14 days, as medications of this type may remain in your system for several weeks after the most recent dose, creating a risk of drug interactions.

BuSpar can interact with medications and substances that affect the enzyme CYP3A4, including grapefruit juice. Make sure to avoid consuming grapefruit juice or grapefruit while taking BuSpar or generic buspirone.

How to Maintain a Healthy Weight While Using BuSpar

If you’re concerned about gaining weight while using BuSpar, making a few simple changes to your habits can help you to maintain your normal body weight and lower your risk of putting on weight during treatment. 

Use the following tips to maintain a healthy, stable weight while you use BuSpar:

  • Check your initial body weight before you start taking medication. If you’re worried about gaining weight while using BuSpar, make a note of your original weight before you start using medication.
    This way, you’ll be able to accurately track any changes in your body weight that happen during treatment. 

  • Calculate your basal metabolic rate (BMR). Your basal metabolic rate is the number of calories your body burns as paper of basic functions. Understanding your BMR can help you to avoid overeating and gaining weight (or undereating and losing weight).
    To avoid any unwanted changes in your body weight, try to eat roughly the same amount of calories that your body needs on a daily basis. 

  • Eat a healthy diet. Try to eat a healthy, balanced diet. The CDC recommends designing your diet around ingredients such as fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, lean meat, poultry, eggs, seafood, whole grains and low-fat dairy products.
    To minimize the impact on comfort foods and junk foods, stick to small portions and try to enjoy these foods in moderation.  

  • Keep yourself physically active. Physical activity not only helps to burn fat — it’s also a great way to prevent feelings of anxiety. Exercise can help to distract you from the things that make you feel anxious while changing your brain chemistry to improve your mood.
    Try to get at least 150 minutes of physical activity every week, even if it’s just going for a walk around your neighborhood or doing a quick daily workout.

  • Don’t worry about small weight changes. It’s normal for your weight to fluctuate by a few pounds over the course of each day, often due to changes in your fluid levels or the amount of food in your digestive system.
    Try to avoid worrying about small increases or decreases in your weight. Instead, weigh yourself infrequently and focus on the long-term trend before changing your habits and diet to increase or decrease your body weight. 

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The Final Word on BuSpar and Weight Gain

Does BuSpar cause weight gain? Unlike many antidepressant medications, BuSpar and generic buspirone aren’t associated with an increased risk of weight gain.  

If you’re prescribed BuSpar and have concerns about your weight, try using the habits above to maintain a healthy weight while you use your medication. Reach out to your healthcare provider if you notice any sudden changes in your appetite, eating habits or body weight.

If you think that you might have an anxiety disorder, you can get help by talking to your primary care provider or contacting a mental health professional in your area.

You can also get help from home with our range of online mental health services, including our online psychiatry service. If appropriate, you’ll receive ongoing care and medication to help you gain control over your anxiety symptoms.

Finally, you can find out more about dealing with anxiety, depression and other common mental health issues using our free online mental health resources and content.

7 Sources

Hims & Hers has strict sourcing guidelines to ensure our content is accurate and current. We rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We strive to use primary sources and refrain from using tertiary references.

  1. Any Anxiety Disorder. (n.d.). Retrieved from
  2. Buspirone Hydrochloride Tablets, USP. (2020, November). Retrieved from
  3. LABEL: BUSPAR- buspirone hydrochloride tablet. (2016, May 25). Retrieved from
  4. Wilson, T.K. & Tripp, J. (2022, March 16). Buspirone. StatPearls. Retrieved from
  5. Healthy Eating for a Healthy Weight. (2021, April 19). Retrieved from
  6. Can exercise help treat anxiety? (2019, October 24). Retrieved from https://www.
  7. How much physical activity do adults need? (2022, March 17). Retrieved from

This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information contained herein is not a substitute for and should never be relied upon for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment. Learn more about our editorial standards here.

Payback for a piece. How diet pills are crippled

Retribution for the figure How diet pills are crippled

Retribution for the figure. How diet pills are crippled - RIA Novosti, 03/03/2020 How diet pills are crippled

In pursuit of a slim figure, people are ready for anything. Even the risk of falling ill or ending up in the hospital with a diagnosis of "stomach ulcer" does not particularly scare them. Problems with ... RIA Novosti, 29.01.2018







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Society, Russia

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MOSCOW, January 29 — RIA Novosti, Kamila Turkina. In pursuit of a slim figure, people are ready for anything. Even the risk of falling ill or being admitted to the hospital with a diagnosis of "stomach ulcer" does not particularly scare them. Digestive problems are just one of the side effects of weight loss drugs that are once again at the peak of popularity. RIA Novosti figured out whether it is possible to get rid of excess weight with the help of anti-obesity drugs.

The problem is obvious

18 July 2011, 16:33

Dreams of a new body speed up weight loss three times, scientists say published in the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity.

Last week, a boom in sales of weight loss drugs was recorded in Russia - the volume of purchased weight loss drugs increased by 12%, and pharmacies received solid revenue due to the demand for pills. But biologically active additives, which, if selected correctly, can be beneficial, on the contrary, began to be bought less frequently. This may be due to the fact that with regular physical activity, a person can do without them, experts explain.
The number of Russians suffering from obesity has also increased dramatically recently. According to the statistics of Rospotrebnadzor, more than half of the country's population is overweight, and for a quarter of Russians, extra pounds have long turned into a protracted chronic disease. Probably, the demand for drugs is due to this. But are anti-obesity drugs really that effective and can replace diets and exercise?

Doctors and fitness trainers are not too optimistic. According to them, weight loss drugs are only a part of the necessary therapy, and dietary restrictions and physical activity are definitely not enough here. In addition, fat burning pills are most often prescribed only to patients with an advanced stage of obesity.

"There are only two real drugs for weight loss: the first category includes the slimming substance sibutramine, the second category includes the active ingredient orlistat. The first drug is sold exclusively by prescription, the second can be purchased without a prescription, but for quite a lot of money. Everything else is not drugs, but dietary supplements, which also have certain properties and are used by nutritionists all over the world," explains dietitian, doctor of medical sciences Alexei Kovalkov.

Lost two, ate five

November 11, 2017, 15:50

Scientists have found out how anorexia and obesity are associated with depression

24-year-old Alexandra Kovalevskaya (name changed) took sibutramine pills for several months. The girl has been struggling with excess weight since childhood, but her love for sweets and a sedentary lifestyle prevented her from achieving tangible results.
"After taking this medication and the side effects, I decided to pull myself together and at least start eating right. On the pills, I only lost a couple of kilograms, which I then quickly ate back. In addition, there were pains in my stomach, constant dryness in my mouth and strong stress, because sibutramine also affects the nervous system. Therefore, I refused the drug and limited myself to flour and fatty foods. The result was not long in coming: in a month I threw off five kilograms, "Kovalevskaya tells her story.

It is impossible to lose weight with the help of pills without following a diet, says Aleksey Kovalkov. The fact is that all medicines work symptomatically - they help to cope with the symptoms of the disease, and not with the cause. That is, as soon as the patient stops taking the pills, the extra pounds will return, because the person does not know the reason for the extra weight.

"When a patient, for example, has a headache, he goes to the pharmacy and buys pills for fever, instead of going to the doctor. And if a person has a heart arrhythmia, he drinks a medicine for it, but does not cure the disease itself. It is worth stopping reception, as the heart rhythm will be disturbed again. Excess weight appears due to an imbalance, lack or excess of certain substances in the body. Doctors prescribe medications only after familiarizing themselves with the blood test, when it is already clear what exactly is missing. Any normal pharmacy will tell you that before taking sibutramine or orlistat, you should consult with a nutritionist, "says the doctor.

The price of a slim figure

The main thing is not to buy potent drugs without a doctor's prescription, Alexey Kovalkov explains: you will not only not lose weight, but also aggravate health problems.

October 19, 2017, 20:33

An effective way to fight obesity is presented True, immediately after that, the girl ended up in the hospital with a stomach ulcer and inflammation of the pancreas. The patient was discharged from the hospital only two weeks later.

"It took more than one month to restore the gastrointestinal tract. At first I was very happy that I had lost weight, but it was very scary to pay for a slim figure at such a price. The doctors who diagnosed me with a stomach ulcer forbade eating spicy, starchy foods and fried - that's how I lost weight. Now sometimes I allow myself something sweet, but I try not to abuse it: I really don’t want to return to the hospital again. The main thing here is to understand that the kilograms will not go away on their own with the help of some miraculous pills If you really set out to lose weight, you need to pull yourself together and at least exclude harmful foods from your diet, "Now calls Varvara.

Now the girl not only follows a diet, but also works out on her own in the gym — this helped her lose weight from 78 kilograms to 65 and build muscle mass.

Oh sport, you are minus kilograms

A slender figure depends not only on metabolism, but also on the age of the patient, say athletes and fitness trainers. It is easier for young people to get rid of excess weight - if we are not talking about an advanced stage of obesity, then a properly selected diet will be enough. Older patients will find it somewhat more difficult to lose weight without regular exercise.

January 10, 2016, 23:44

Fitness is the sport of beautiful people after 55 years, dietary restrictions in 50% of cases do not work without physical education.Even if a person has great willpower and does not eat for days, there will be practically no result, besides, then the motivation disappears and the person becomes fat again. mature people, but without physical exertion it is unlikely that you will be able to lose many kilograms," explains fitness trainer and Russian champion in athletics Natalia Prokhorova.

She also has her own opinion about drugs: "As for drugs for weight loss, pills alone are not enough. In addition, all pills must be taken under the strict supervision of a doctor, otherwise you can harm yourself. For example, fat-burning drugs increase the load on heart and nervous system, so you should not abuse such drugs: it’s good if you just get rid of arrhythmia or chronic lack of sleep.”

"Another subspecies of drugs for weight loss is appetite blockers. They do not affect the internal organs - there is simply no appetite and that's it. But as soon as the course ends, the person slowly returns to his habits again. And there is also levocarnitine, it works only in severe forms obesity and the presence of constant physical activity," notes Prokhorova.

If there are a lot of extra pounds, it is most effective to combine fitness and proper nutrition not with medicines, but with dietary supplements selected individually by a doctor, the trainer says. Dietary supplements contain a complex of essential substances that normalize the microflora of the gastrointestinal tract and saturate the body with essential vitamins. But eating cakes with diet pills is a road to nowhere, experts conclude in unison.

What is buspirone (brand name Buspar) used for?


If you have any medical questions or concerns, please contact your doctor. Articles in the Health Guide are based on peer-reviewed research and information from medical societies and government agencies. However, they are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Buspirone (brand name Buspar) is used to treat generalized anxiety disorder and as a short-term treatment for anxiety. It is part of a class of anxiety medications known as anxiolytics; they work by changing the levels of certain chemicals in the brain called neurotransmitters (MedlinePlus, 2020).

Specifically, buspirone is a serotonin receptor agonist, a fancy way of saying that it binds to and stimulates the serotonin receptor in the brain. Scientists know that increasing levels of serotonin in the brain appears to improve symptoms of conditions like anxiety. Buspirone also affects dopamine levels, another neurotransmitter responsible for mental health (DailyMed, 2019).


  • Buspirone (brand name Buspar) is used to treat generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and as a short-term treatment for anxiety symptoms.
  • It acts like serotonin, a natural substance in our brain that affects how our brain cells communicate.
  • Common side effects of buspirone include dizziness, drowsiness and nausea.
  • Do not take buspirone if you are taking MAO inhibitors or have taken them within the past 14 days as this can lead to a potentially life-threatening condition known as serotonin syndrome.

Buspirone is also prescribed off-label for the treatment of depression when used with another antidepressant. Off-label means that the drug is being used to treat a condition that is not approved by the FDA for treatment. Buspirone also helps reduce the sexual side effects of SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor). SSRIs are drugs commonly used to treat depression (Wilson, 2020).

Studies have shown that buspirone is as effective as benzodiazepines (eg Xanax, Valium, etc. ) for generalized anxiety disorder. However, because buspirone may take two to four weeks to work, it is not used for episodes of acute anxiety (Wilson, 2020).

What is Generalized Anxiety Disorder?

Everyone experiences anxiety from time to time about life, finances, family, work, or all of the above. However, if your anxiety is preventing you from doing what you want to do and is starting to take over your life, you may have Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD).

People with generalized anxiety disorder experience excessive anxiety; they may worry about anything and everything, including everyday things like family, relationships, work, etc. This anxiety can interfere with work, school, social interaction, and other aspects of their daily lives.

The physical symptoms of anxiety include things like muscle tension, heart palpitations, trouble sleeping, unexplained pain, restlessness, shortness of breath, and more (MedlinePlus, 2020). If you experience restlessness or uncontrollable restlessness for more than six days and at least six months and you have three or more physical symptoms, you may have GAD (ADAA, n. o.).


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Trade name Buspirone (Buspar)

Buspirone was first marketed in 1986 under the brand name Buspar. In recent years, this drug has become more popular because it has fewer side effects than other anxiety medications and has become more commonly prescribed (Wilson, 2020). Today, buspirone is only available as a generic drug. Buspar was discontinued.

Common side effects of buspirone

Like many medicines, buspirone can cause side effects. The general side effects of Buspirone include (DailyMed, 2019):

  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Nervousness
  • ENTIROSITIONS INFORMATIONS BOSTOMOS Buspirone are the potential Buspirone for the Steppirona are the potential of the Buspirona are the potential of the Buspirona is the potential of the Buspirona are the potential of the Buspirona is the potential of the Buspiron These include (UptoDate, n. d.):

    • Akathisia or restlessness
    • Pseudoparkinsonism - symptoms similar to Parkinson's disease, including unsteadiness, tremors, weakness, stiffness and difficulty moving.
    • CNS (central nervous system) depression, which occurs when the body's neurological functions slow down - you should not drive or operate heavy machinery while using this medicine.
    • Serotonin syndrome, a potentially life-threatening condition. Because buspirone acts on serotonin in the brain, taking other medications or supplements that increase serotonin levels can cause serotonin overload. Symptoms include agitation, hallucinations, muscle twitching or stiffness, seizures, palpitations, high blood pressure, nausea, vomiting, and fever.

    If you experience any of these symptoms while taking buspirone, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

    Dosage of buspirone

    Buspirone tablets are available in 5, 7.5, 10, 15 and 30 mg tablets. The recommended starting dose for generalized anxiety disorder is 10-15 mg per day divided into two 7. 5 mg doses or three 5 mg doses. The maximum daily dose is 60 mg per day (Wilson, 2020).

    It doesn't matter if you take buspirone with or without food, but you must be consistent and take it around the same time each day. Avoid taking this drug with large amounts of grapefruit juice. If you miss a dose of buspirone, take it as soon as you remember. But you should skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Never take two doses at one time (MedLinePlus, 2020).

    Buspirone is a pregnancy Category B drug, which means there are not enough data to determine if it is safe to take during pregnancy. It is not known if buspirone is present in breast milk. Thus, buspirone should only be taken by pregnant or lactating women when needed (Dailymed, 2019).

    Buspirone drug interactions

    Buspirone can cause dangerous drug interactions - be sure to tell your doctor about any other medicines (prescription, over-the-counter, herbal, etc.) you may be taking.

    You should not use buspirone with medicines known as MAOIs (monoamine oxidase inhibitors) as this can lead to serotonin syndrome, a potentially life-threatening condition. Do not take buspirone by mouth for 14 days on an MAOI. Examples include (DailyMed, 2019):

    • iskarboxaside
    • Linezolide
    • methylene blue for injections
    • Fenelzin
    • Tronilcypromine
    • 9 906

    Buspirone is metabolized in the liver by CYP3A4. Taking buspirone with medicines that block or stimulate CYP3A4 may change your blood levels of buspirone - your doctor may need to adjust your dosage.

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    Drugs that affect CYP3A4 include diltiazem, verapamil, erythromycin, itraconazole, nefazodone, rifampin, ketoconazole, ritonavir, dexamethasone, and some anticonvulsants (DailyMed, 2019).

    Taking drugs such as SSRIs, SSRIs (serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors), buspirone, triptans, and other drugs that increase serotonin levels can lead to serotonin syndrome (DailyMed, 2019).

    Alcohol may increase the drowsiness caused by buspirone. You should not drink alcohol while taking buspirone (MedlinePlus, 2020).

    This does not include all possible drug interactions and others may exist. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist for more information about medicines.


    1. American Anxiety and Depression Association - Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) (undated) Retrieved September 17, 2020, from
    2. Buspirone: MedlinePlus drug information. (2020). Retrieved September 17, 2020, from
    3. DailyMed - BUSPIRONE HCL - Buspirone hydrochloride tablet. (2019). Retrieved September 17, 2020, from
    4. MedlinePlus - Anxiety (2020). Retrieved September 17, 2020, from
    5. UpToDate - Buspirone: Drug Information (n/a), retrieved September 17, 2020, from https://www.

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