Bipolar disorder vastly undertreated: study
CHICAGO (Reuters) - Bipolar disorder, a brain disorder that strikes early and can cause lifelong disability, is chronically undertreated in many low-income countries, government researchers reported on Monday.
Their survey of more than 61,000 patients suggests 2.4 percent of the world's population may have some form of the disease, which is marked by bizarre shifts in mood, energy and activity that can affect relationships and job performance.
"Bipolar disorder is responsible for the loss of more disability-adjusted life-years than all forms of cancer or major neurologic conditions such as epilepsy and Alzheimer's disease, primarily because of its early onset and chronicity across the life span," Kathleen Merikangas of the National Institute of Mental Health and colleagues wrote in the Archives of General Psychiatry.
Her team conducted surveys of adults in the United States, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Bulgaria, Romania, China, India, Japan, Lebanon and New Zealand.
They found that less than half of those with bipolar disorder - also known as manic-depressive illness - received mental health treatment during their lifetimes. In low-income countries, only 25.2 percent of bipolar patients said they had any contact with the mental health system.
Three-quarters of those with bipolar disorder also met the diagnostic criteria for at least one other disorder, with anxiety disorders being the most common shared illness, the team found.
More than half of people said their symptoms started in adolescence, underscoring the need for early detection and treatment, the researchers said.
"In light of the disability associated with bipolar disorder, the lack of mental health treatment among those with bipolar disorder, particularly in low income countries, is alarming," the team wrote.
SOURCE: http://bit.ly/frhigC Archives of General Psychiatry, online March 7, 2011.
Sign Up for Free Newsletters
Ask Your Doctor the RIGHT Questions!
the most from your doctor visit.
Emailed right to you!
The Ask Your Doctor email series
may contain sponsored content.
18+, US residents only please.
Get the MOST from QualityHealth
- Top Searches
- 1. Arthritis Management: Nature Heals
- 2. 5 Digestive To-Dos
- 3. Men: Should You Shave It or Leave It?
- 4. Today's Top Fitness Trends
- 5. Sugar and Osteoarthritis : The Link
- 6. Can't Afford Your Hospital Bills?
- 7. Stay Energized All Day Long
- 8. Phobias: Who Has Them and Why?
- 9. What If Your EpiPen Fails?
- 10. 5 Costly Medical Billing Mistakes
- 1. Ice Falls Can Cause Serious Injuries
- 2. Can Inactivity Act Like a Disease?
- 3. Kale Snack Recipe for Diabetics
- 4. How Running Affects Arthritis
- 5. Sugar and Your Immunity System
- 6. Do Weight Loss Supplements Work?
- 7. 5 Super Foods for Spring
- 8. The Hazards of Reusable Bags
- 9. How to Avoid Ingrown Hairs
- 10. Health Tip: Constantly Change Shoes
- 1. 4 Common Treatments for Epilepsy
- 2. What Does a Urogynecologist Do?
- 3. GERD Without Heartburn? It's Possible
- 4. Graston Technique: Can It Work on You?
- 5. Music Therapy Can Help Autism
- 6. 8 Ways to Fight MS-Related Fatigue
- 7. Can You Still Bleed After Menopause?
- 8. Be Your Own Health Care Advocate
- 9. Why Is Syphillis on the Rise?
- 10. Ideal Weight vs. Happy Weight
The material on the QualityHealth Web site is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment provided by a physician or other qualified health provider. See additional information.