Bipolar disorder, or manic depression, is characterised by episodes of pathological mood states. The two poles are mania (with a predominant elated or irritable mood) and depression (with feelings of sadness, anxiety, guilt or hopelessness) but mixed states frequently occur. Episodes can last for many months and profoundly affect physical health, relationships and careers. Since diagnosis and management are difficult, this practical guide provides an overview of the disorder and detailed guidelines for treating the illness throughout its stages, from authors internationally renowned for their work in bipolar disorder. Also discussed are disease theories, mechanisms and key clinical trials, as well as chapters devoted to psychosocial treatments, substance misuse and insights from ëlived experience'. In-depth analyses of selected population groups, including youth, the elderly and women, complement guidelines for clinical approaches in managing bipolar disorder. Comprehensive and detailed, this guide will prove invaluable to clinicians, general practitioners, psychiatrists and psychologists.
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