Although depressive episodes occur in both bipolar disorder and major depressive disorder, the cardinal feature of bipolar disorder is a history of mania or hypomania. Depressive episodes are also most often the presenting complaint in both illnesses. Thus, the challenge is distinguishing bipolar illness from unipolar depression. Walter Dunn, MD, PhD, explores this psychiatric topic and reflects on accurately diagnosing bipolar disorder.
Formulate an approach to diagnose patients with bipolar disorder.
Formulate an approach to treat patients with bipolar disorder.
In this episode, Leslie Citrome, MD, MPH, and Manpreet K. Singh, MD, MS, discuss diagnosing unipolar vs bipolar depression. They review why it can be difficult to differentiate between unipolar and bipolar depression; which screening tools they employ, including the rapid mood screener (RMS); how to reduce chances of missing mania; and special tips for differentiating between major depressive disorder (MDD) and bipolar depression in children.