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[Clinical problem of the concept of "bipolar spectrum"].

Authors
  • Semba, Jun'ichi
Type
Published Article
Journal
Seishin shinkeigaku zasshi = Psychiatria et neurologia Japonica
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2011
Volume
113
Issue
12
Pages
1200–1208
Identifiers
PMID: 22352005
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The spectrum concept of mental disorders means that a series of diseases consists of several subtypes, each of which overlap in their symptoms or etiologies. One of the most accepted spectrum concepts is a "bipolar spectrum". The bipolar spectrum concept has clinical validity of the diagnosis and treatment of the patients with bipolarity features in their course and symptoms. However, this concept may confuse categorical distinctions of mood disorders and lead over-diagnose of bipolar disorders. The over-diagnosis of bipolar spectrum may cause over-prescription of mood stabilizers. The medicalization of "normal mood swing" might also occur. In these years, several anticonvulsants and second generation antipsychotics acquired a new indication as a "mood stabilizer". If the marketing of mood stabilizer is hidden behind the expansion of bipolar spectrum, clinicians should assess the clinical validity of this concept more carefully.

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