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What are some concerns when using antidepressants as a form of treatment for bipolar disorder?

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While antidepressants remain widely prescribed for bipolar depression, most antidepressants have not been adequately studied in patients with bipolar depression.

In general, your doctor may try to keep the use of antidepressants limited and brief. Long-term treatment with antidepressants in bipolar disorder tends to be recommended only when the initial response is clear-cut and there are no current or emerging signs of mania or hypomania. Some antidepressants -- given alone or in combination with other drugs -- may trigger a manic episode or cause cycles between depression and mania to be more rapid. If an antidepressant is not clearly having a beneficial effect for bipolar depression, there is usually little reason to continue it.

SOURCES: 

American Psychiatry Association: 5.  Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders

Kupfer, J. (editor). ., Current Psychiatry, 2004.  Bipolar Depression The Clinician's Reference Guide

Geddes, JR. , 2004.  American Journal of Psychiatry

McElroy SL. 2004. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 

Sidor, MM. 2012 Dec. Curr Psychiatry Rep.,

Tohen, M. , 2003Arch Gen Psychiatry

Tränkner, A. ., 2013.Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat

Salvi, V. , 2008. J. Clin Psychiatry

Sunovion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 

 

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on November 8, 2017

SOURCES: 

American Psychiatry Association: 5.  Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders

Kupfer, J. (editor). ., Current Psychiatry, 2004.  Bipolar Depression The Clinician's Reference Guide

Geddes, JR. , 2004.  American Journal of Psychiatry

McElroy SL. 2004. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 

Sidor, MM. 2012 Dec. Curr Psychiatry Rep.,

Tohen, M. , 2003Arch Gen Psychiatry

Tränkner, A. ., 2013.Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat

Salvi, V. , 2008. J. Clin Psychiatry

Sunovion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 

 

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on November 8, 2017

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If I have bipolar disorder, is it important to have support from family?

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