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Atypical Antipsychotics for Bipolar Depression

Newer "atypical" antipsychotics work differently than other available drugs, and some (but not all) have been show to help treat depression in bipolar disorder. Currently, only quetiapine, lurasidone, and the combination of olanzapine plus fluoxetine (Prozac), are approved by the FDA to treat bipolar depression. Other atypical antipsychotics are currently being studied to determine if they have antidepressant properties for treating or preventing bipolar depression.

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Understanding Bipolar Disorder -- Treatment

Bipolar disorder is treated with three main classes of medication: mood stabilizers, antipsychotics, and, while their safety and effectiveness for the condition are sometimes controversial, antidepressants. Typically, treatment entails a combination of at least one mood-stabilizing drug and/or atypical antipsychotic, plus psychotherapy. The most widely used drugs for the treatment of bipolar disorder include lithium carbonate and valproic acid (also known as Depakote). Lithium carbonate can...

Read the Understanding Bipolar Disorder -- Treatment article > >

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg, MD on October 27, 2014

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