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J Affect Disord. 2000 Dec;61(1-2):87-94.

Is impaired outcome following a first manic episode due to mood-incongruent psychosis?

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  • 1Bipolar and Psychotic Disorders Research Program, Department of Psychiatry, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, 45267-0559, Cincinnati, OH, USA.



Mood-incongruent psychosis during the course of bipolar disorder has been associated with poor outcome. However, it remains unknown whether this is secondary to persistent affective or psychotic symptoms or both.


Fifty patients with bipolar disorder between the ages of 16 and 45 years were recruited during their first psychiatric hospitalization for mania. These patients were evaluated using structured and semi-structured clinical instruments then followed longitudinally. Outcomes during the first eight months of follow-up were compared between patients with mood-incongruent psychosis and those without (i.e., patients with mood-congruent psychosis or no psychosis) during the index manic episode. Specifically, ratings of the percent of weeks during follow-up with psychosis and affective syndromes and symptoms, as well as ratings of global outcome (GAF), were compared.


Patients with mood-incongruent psychosis at the index hospitalization exhibited significantly more weeks during follow-up with both mood-incongruent and mood-congruent psychotic symptoms than patients without mood-incongruent psychosis. Mood-incongruent psychosis was also associated with poorer overall functioning during the outcome interval. The groups did not differ in the percent of weeks with affective syndromes or symptoms. Treatment during follow-up did not differ between groups and was not associated with outcome variables in general.


Mood-incongruent psychosis that occurs during the first manic episode appears to predict an increased likelihood of persistent psychotic symptoms during the subsequent eight months. This persistence of psychosis is associated with a worse overall course of illness as compared to patients without mood-incongruent psychosis.


These results apply to a relatively short outcome period and are from a single center.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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