Bipolar disorder

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What is bipolar disorder?

Bipolar disorder, also referred to as bipolar affective disorder or manic depression, describes a category of mood disorders defined by the presence of one or more episodes of abnormally elevated energy levels, cognition, and mood with or without one or more depressive episodes.

Common symptoms reported by people with bipolar disorder

Common symptoms
How bad it is
What people are taking for it

Reports may be affected by other conditions and/or medication side effects. We ask about general symptoms (anxious mood, depressed mood, fatigue, pain, and stress) regardless of condition.
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Treatments taken by people with bipolar disorder

Treatment name(s)
Type
How many have tried
Tried for
Treatment name(s)

(Lamictal)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
362
Tried for
bipolar disorder (359) depressed mood (8)
3 more
Treatment name(s)

(Talk therapy)
Type
Psychotherapy
How many have tried
248
Tried for
bipolar disorder (246) anxious mood (8)
4 more
Treatment name(s)

(Abilify)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
231
Tried for
bipolar disorder (225) depressed mood (29)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Seroquel)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
204
Tried for
bipolar disorder (199) depressed mood (5)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Lithium Carbonate ER)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
160
Tried for
bipolar disorder (160) anxious mood (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Depakote)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
97
Tried for
bipolar disorder (96) depressed mood (3)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Klonopin)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
81
Tried for
anxious mood (81) bipolar disorder (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Wellbutrin XL)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
72
Tried for
depressed mood (62) bipolar disorder (11)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Trileptal)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
70
Tried for
bipolar disorder (69) pain (2)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Vistaril)
Type
Prescription Drug
How many have tried
69
Tried for
anxious mood (69)

Data from patients with bipolar disorder, who reported starting treatments within the last 5 years.
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Compare treatments taken by people with bipolar disorder

Treatment name(s)
Perceived effectiveness
Side effects
Total evaluations
Tried for
Treatment name(s)

(Lamictal)
Perceived effectiveness
for bipolar disorder (205 evaluations)
Side effects
drowsiness rashes (redness, swelling) 79 more
Total evaluations
254
Tried for
bipolar disorder (359) depressed mood (8)
3 more
Treatment name(s)

(Talk therapy)
Perceived effectiveness
for bipolar disorder (146 evaluations)
Side effects
anxious mood abdominal pain 23 more
Total evaluations
164
Tried for
bipolar disorder (246) anxious mood (8)
4 more
Treatment name(s)

(Abilify)
Perceived effectiveness
for bipolar disorder (135 evaluations)
Side effects
weight gain restlessness (akathisia) 66 more
Total evaluations
150
Tried for
bipolar disorder (225) depressed mood (29)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Seroquel)
Perceived effectiveness
for bipolar disorder (112 evaluations)
Side effects
weight gain drowsiness 76 more
Total evaluations
139
Tried for
bipolar disorder (199) depressed mood (5)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Lithium Carbonate ER)
Perceived effectiveness
for bipolar disorder (77 evaluations)
Side effects
weight gain tremor in hands 75 more
Total evaluations
84
Tried for
bipolar disorder (160) anxious mood (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Depakote)
Perceived effectiveness
for bipolar disorder (55 evaluations)
Side effects
weight gain hair loss 36 more
Total evaluations
58
Tried for
bipolar disorder (96) depressed mood (3)
1 more
Treatment name(s)

(Klonopin)
Perceived effectiveness
for anxious mood (53 evaluations)
Side effects
sleepiness drowsiness 8 more
Total evaluations
53
Tried for
anxious mood (81) bipolar disorder (1)
Treatment name(s)

(Wellbutrin XL)
Perceived effectiveness
for depressed mood (39 evaluations)
Side effects
irritability weight gain 11 more
Total evaluations
46
Tried for
depressed mood (62) bipolar disorder (11)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Trileptal)
Perceived effectiveness
for bipolar disorder (42 evaluations)
Side effects
sleepiness dizziness 27 more
Total evaluations
45
Tried for
bipolar disorder (69) pain (2)
2 more
Treatment name(s)

(Vistaril)
Perceived effectiveness
for anxious mood (39 evaluations)
Side effects
sleepiness drowsiness 8 more
Total evaluations
39
Tried for
anxious mood (69)
  • Major
  • Moderate
  • Slight
  • None
  • Can't tell
  • Severe
  • Moderate
  • Mild
  • None

Data from patients with bipolar disorder, who reported starting treatments within the last 5 years.
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Who has bipolar disorder on PatientsLikeMe?


Age
Age Proportion # of patients
<20 164
20s 1972
30s 5054
40s 7845
50s 6814
60s 3060
70+ 483
Age at first symptom
Age at first symptom Proportion # of patients
0-19 years 4034
20-29 years 1630
30-39 years 1069
40-49 years 548
50-59 years 169
60-69 years 37
70+ years 5

Distribution of sex

Sex
Sex Proportion # of patients
Male 4225
Female 21285

Diagnosis status
Diagnosis status Proportion # of patients
Diagnosed 8907
Not Diagnosed 366

These charts show data from bipolar disorder patients who have completed their condition history
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