Husband has bipolar -- what's the chance our daughter got it?

Q: My husband has bipolar disorder, he is going to start a treatment. my question is: We have a 11 yers old daughter, does she has more chances to have a bipolar disorder than other child? thanks. lorena

Dear Lorena --
Unfortunately yes, this condition is recognized to be genetic, in part.  Her chance of having it is higher than average.  Yours is such an important question.  There was a nice article about improving estimates of risk for someone like you, by some doctors from Nova Scotia, just recently.  I have tried to "translate" their technical article as a new section on my website, for people with questions like yours.  By the time Colleen posts this on BipolarWorld, I should be done or close to it on my site.  Have a look to learn how to make your own estimate based on the frequency of the illness in his family. 

Dr. Phelps



Published January, 2001