This essay will include information regarding how Bipolar Disorder is diagnosed and what tests and professionals are involved in the diagnosis and treatment of the mental illness. Throughout this essay there will also be discussion regarding what treatment is availTABLE for Bipolar Disorder and how the patient’s environment can promote or detract from a successful treatment. In closing this essay will discuss how the diagnosis and treatment of Bipolar Disorder today comma rest with the diagnosis and treatments of the past. One may ask exactly what Bipolar crosier is.
Bipolar disorder is a serious mental illness that can lead to risky behavior, damaged relationships and careers, and even suicidal tendencies if it’s not treated. “Bipolar disorder used to be known as manic depressive disorder or manic depression” (WebMD, 2010). Manic is described an increasingly restless, energetic, talkative, reckless, powerful, euphoric period. Lavish spending sprees or impulsive risky sex can occur. Then, at some point, this high-flying mood can spiral into something darker such as irritation, confusion, anger, or feeling trapped.
Depression is described as the opposite mood involving sadness, crying, sense of worthlessness, loss of energy, loss of pleasure, sleep problems. There are several myths and misconceptions linked to the mental illness of Bipolar disorder. One of the myths is that bipolar disorder is a rare condition. This is not true. Bipolar disorder affects over five million American adults. The mental illness is not rare at all and actually affects almost three percent of the U. S. Population. Another myth linked to Bipolar disorder is that Bipolar disorder is just another name for mood swings.
This myth is also not true. The mood swings associated with bipolar disorder are very different than those of people without the condition. “The mood swings Of a person with bipolar disorder, experts agree, are far more severe than, say, a person without bipolar disorder being bummed out because rain spoiled the weekend plans or weight loss efforts aren’t showing the desired results” (WebMD, 2010). There are two other myths that are linked to Bipolar disorder, one being that there is a bipolar test and the other being that bipolar disorder cannot be diagnosed till the age of 18.
Both of the previous myths are untrue. “A diagnosis of bipolar disorder depends on a doctor taking a careful patient history, asking about symptoms over time. A family history of the disorder increases a person’s chances of getting it. There are clearly cases of children who have classic presentation in the early childhood years. But if a child does not have a classic pattern, it’s usually more difficult to make the diagnosis” (WebMD, 2010). Bipolar disorder is a very complex mental illness. Bipolar disorder has several different types of homonyms as well as five different types of the disorder.
The primary symptoms of Bipolar disorder are dramatic and very unpredicTABLE mood swings. Other symptoms of Bipolar disorder vary between mania symptoms and depression symptoms. “Mania symptoms may include excessive happiness, excitement, irritability, restlessness, increased energy, less need for sleep, racing thoughts, high sex drive, and a tendency to make grand and unattainTABLE plans”. (WebMD, 2010). “Depression symptoms may include sadness, anxiety, irritability, loss of energy, uncontrollTABLE crying, change in appetite causing weight loss or gain, increased need for sleep, difficulty making decisions, and thoughts of death or suicide”. WebMD, 2010). The five different types of Bipolar disorder include Bipolar I, Bipolar II, Mixed Bipolar, Cyclorama, and Rapid Cycling. A patient that may be affected by Bipolar I disorder will have experienced at least one manic episode throughput their life. This manic episode is a period of time that the person will experience an abnormally elevated that is accompanied by abnormal behavior that will disrupt the life of the patient. In the event that a patient is diagnosed with Bipolar II disorder, the patients experience will be similar to that of a patient with Bipolar I disorder with the moods swings cycling between high and low moods.
In Bipolar II disorder the patient’s high mood swings will never reach the full mania level. A patient dealing with Rapid Cycling will experience at least four or possibly more episodes of mania or possibly depression in a one year time span. “About 10% to 20% of people with bipolar disorder have rapid cycling. ” (WebMD, 2010). In the case of Mixed Bipolar disorder, a patient will experience episodes of both mania and depression simultaneously or in a rapid sequence. The last type of Bipolar disorder is known as Cyclorama. Cyclonic disorder is basically a mild mood disorder.
Patients will experience milder symptoms than with full blown Bipolar disorder. “When a person’s illness follows the classic pattern, diagnosing bipolar disorder is relatively easy. But bipolar disorder can be sneaky. Symptoms can defy the expected manic-depressive sequence” (WebMD, 2010). Bipolar disorder affects many neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters are chemicals in the brain hat regulate other chemicals in the brain. (Unknown, 2009). With Bipolar disorder, the neurotransmitters that are associated with the mental illness are Dopamine, Morphophonemic, and Serotonin.
The regulatory action of Dopamine is mood, behavior, thought process, muscle movement, physical activity, heart rate, blood pressure, feeding appetite, and satiety. The regulatory actions of Morphophonemic are mood, anxiety, vigilance, arousal, heart rate, and blood pressure. Lastly there is Serotonin with regulatory actions of perception of pain, sleeping cycle, motor activity, sexual behavior, ND temperature regulation. All of these are highly related to the mental illness of Bipolar disorder. All three neurotransmitters are linked to Bipolar disorder through mood, behavior, thought process, sleeping cycle, and sexual behavior. Mary Lou Mulishly, 2006). “Doctors have come a long way in understanding different moods in bipolar disorder and in making an accurate diagnosis. A bipolar disorder diagnosis is made only by taking careful note of symptoms, including their severity, length, and frequency’ (WebMD, 2010). “Identifying genetic interactions, rather than performing one-dimensional gnome scans, might allow researchers to better understand the pathologically of bipolar disorder and eventually to identify specific treatments” (Dubiously, 2010).
Diagnosis of Bipolar disorder is usually done through patient history and physical examination. Some laboratory tests may be conducted such a thyroid function test is hypothyroidism is suspected as a cause of the patient’s depression and hyperthyroidism is a cause of the patients mania. A CB may be ordered to rule out anemia as a cause of the patient’s depression. Urinalysis and urine toxicology may also be ordered to heck for any substance abuse in the patient. EGG and EGG may be ordered to evaluate for neurological and cardiac dysfunction. Suzanne Pinto, 2010). The current treatment or treatments availTABLE for a patient diagnosed with Bipolar disorder are medication and therapy. The main goals of treatment are to promote optimum mental health status, provide emotional support, and educate the patient regarding Bipolar disorder. (Suzanne Pinto, 2010). With all of these goals and treatment, a patient with Bipolar disorder can and will function normally throughout their life. Lithium is considered one of the best restricted treatment medications for the mental illness Bipolar disorder. Lithium appears to protect against the development of dementia in patients with bipolar disorder”. (Silver, 2010). Studies show, “of 4856 patients (mean age, 54. 1), 50. 4% received at least one lithium prescription, 36. 7% received at least one anticonvulsant prescription, 88. 1% received at least one antidepressant prescription, and 80. 3% received at least one antispasmodic prescription. Dementia was diagnosed in 21 6 patients (4. 5%). After adjustment for age, sex, and use of the other medications, the rate of meantime was lower in patients with two or more lithium prescriptions than in those with only one.
No change in rate was found in recipients of medications from the other categories”. (Silver, 2010). Unlike other common medications for bipolar disorder, the continued use of lithium is protective against the dementia risk that is apparently increased in bipolar disorder. Lithium’s protective properties are already known, as it has been shown to increase gray matter and, in early research, to be an effective treatment for metamorphic lateral sclerosis. Along with medication, ongoing psychotherapy, r ‘talk” therapy, is an important part of treatment for bipolar disorder.