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MMW Fortschr Med. 2005 May 17;147 Spec No 2:32-6.

[Puzzling bipolar disorder].

[Article in German]

Author information

  • 1Klinik und Poliklinik für Psychiatrie, LMU München.


Despite many advances in making the diagnosis of bipolar disorder, five to twelve years lie between the first affective episode and the introduction of an effective treatment. However, it is estimated that approximately only one-fourth of the patients with bipolar disorder are recognized as such at all. Clinical experience plays an important role in the diagnosis. Manias are often the cause for the first treatment with drugs, but the daily lives of patients with bipolar depression are often clearly more negatively affected. The acute therapy of bipolar depression is more complicated than that of mania and the difficult long-term treatment is always associated with a high suicide risk. A long-term therapy of bipolar disorders is not only meaningful for the prevention of new disease episodes, but also because it has a positive effect on comorbidities.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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