Bipolar Disorder Essay

1518 words - 7 pages

Bipolar Disorder
Ray Bradbury once said, “insanity is relative. It depends on who has who locked in what cage.” That statement could very well have been penned specifically for sufferers of bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder is known as a manic-depressive disorder and is a psychiatric diagnosis that covers a plethora of mood disorders. Bipolar is defined by the presence of one or more episodes of abnormally elevated moods, clinically referred to as mania or (if milder) hypomanias. Bipolar disorder affects both men and women. Research has shown that the first episode of bipolar disorder is occurring during adolescence. It must be understood that bipolar disorder is not just a sign of ...view middle of the document...

He is often credited with being the father of depression as a mental illness (Dziegielewski, 2002).
Many other researches added to Burton’s findings. Most notably, Jules Falret and Francois Baillarger furthered the diagnosis of bipolar with findings of their own. Jules Falret coined the term “folie circulaire” (circular insanity) in 1854 while establishing a link between depression and suicide. It was his work that finally led to the term bipolar disorder as he was able to locate a distinction between moments of depression and heightened moods. His findings, recorded in 1875, presented the idea that the disorder was found in certain families creating a genetic link and hereditary inheritance of the disorder (Dziegielewski, 2002).
Francois Baillarger characterized the depressive phase of the disease. It was this advancement that allowed bipolar disorder to receive its own classification from schizophrenia and other mental disorders of the early 1900’s. Baillarger’s work, coupled with the work of Emil Krapelin, established the term manic-depressive. Within fifteen years, their approach to mental illness was fully accepted. It became the prevailing theory of the early 1930’s.
Bipolar I
Bipolar I disorder is a mood disorder that is characterized by at least one manic episode. There can be episodes of hypomania or major depression as well. It is a sub-diagnosis of bipolar disorder. It conforms to the classic concept of manic-depressive illness. Episodes of substance-induced mood disorder or of mood disorder due to a general medical condition often need to be excluded before a correct diagnosis can begin. In addition, schizophrenia, schizophreniform disorder, delusional disorder, and psychotic disorder need to be ruled out as well (Cognitive Dysfunction, 2009).
Treatments for Bipolar I include a Lithium Carbonate management regime, anticonvulsants, electro-convulsive therapy, and behavior modifications. The single most important process of the treatment stage is the sharing of information on the condition and the compliance of the patient in proper use of medication. Anti-depressants should never be used in the treatment regime as it may precipitate a manic episode (Risperdal Consta, 2009).
Bipolar II
In contrast, bipolar II disorder is a bipolar spectrum disorder that is characterized by at least one hypo manic episode and at least one major depressive episode. Depressive episodes are more frequent and intense that the manic episodes and the presence of one or more major depressive episodes must be confirmed before an accurate diagnosis can be determined. It is also believed to be under diagnosed because hypo manic behavior often presents as high-functioning behavior (Cognitive Dysfuntion, 2009). The patient history must include one or more major depressive episodes, the presence of at least one hypo manic episode, and there cannot be a mixed episode (Sizeman, et al. 2009).
The symptoms associated with bipolar II disorder...

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