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How are mood stabilizers used for mixed features of bipolar episode?

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While lithium is often considered a gold standard treatment for mania, it may be less effective when mania and depression occur simultaneously, as in a manic episode with mixed features. Lithium has been used for more than 60 years to treat bipolar disorder. It can take weeks to work fully, making it better for maintenance treatment than for acute manic episodes. Blood levels of lithium and other lab test results must be monitored to avoid side effects.

Valproic acid (Depakote) is an antiseizure medication that also levels out moods in bipolar disorder. It has a more rapid onset of action, and in some studies has been shown to be more effective than lithium for the treatment of manic episodes with mixed features.

Some other antiseizure drugs, such as carbamazepine (Tegretol) and lamotrigine (Lamictal), are also effective mood stabilizers.

SOURCES: National Institute of Mental Health web site, "Bipolar Disorder." Benazzi, F. March 17, 2007. Mick, E. 2003. McElroy, S. January 1997. McElroy, S. December 1992. Medical News Today: "Study Identifies Predictors of Bipolar Disorder Risk." WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise: "Bipolar Disorder: What Increases Your Risk." Moore, D. and Jefferson, J. , Mosby, 2004. Goodwin, F. Sept. 17, 2003. Conway, K. February 2006. Medscape Psychiatry & Mental Health: "Substance Abuse and Bipolar Disorder."










Lancet,Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology,American Journal of Psychiatry,American Journal of Psychiatry,Handbook of Medical PsychiatryThe Journal of the American Medical Association,Journal of Clinical Psychiatry,

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on June 20, 2019

SOURCES: National Institute of Mental Health web site, "Bipolar Disorder." Benazzi, F. March 17, 2007. Mick, E. 2003. McElroy, S. January 1997. McElroy, S. December 1992. Medical News Today: "Study Identifies Predictors of Bipolar Disorder Risk." WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise: "Bipolar Disorder: What Increases Your Risk." Moore, D. and Jefferson, J. , Mosby, 2004. Goodwin, F. Sept. 17, 2003. Conway, K. February 2006. Medscape Psychiatry & Mental Health: "Substance Abuse and Bipolar Disorder."










Lancet,Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology,American Journal of Psychiatry,American Journal of Psychiatry,Handbook of Medical PsychiatryThe Journal of the American Medical Association,Journal of Clinical Psychiatry,

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on June 20, 2019

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How are antipsychotics used for mixed features of bipolar episode?

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