Broadening of the Bipolar Spectrum?
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Q:  Broadening of the Bipolar Spectrum?

Sometime ago i seem to recall coming across a broadening of the bipolar spectrum into bipolar 0.5,1,1.5,2,2.5 etc.I believe bipolar 0.5 was those patients who had had manic episodes but not depressive ones(unipolar mania).  However i can not find any info on this ,is my mind playing tricks on me?

Dear Tim -- 
Since in many experts opinion this is a spectrum, one could break it up into all sorts of small increments, I suppose.  I've seen Bipolar 1-6; and I think I've heard people invoke those half steps, though that seems pretty absurd -- especially since all these types, from 1-6 if you want to look at that them that way, are treated much the same.  Perhaps the commonly referred to "bipolar III", which in most books is "hypomania/mania only in the context of taking an antidepressant", is different in that many would not treat that one with a mood stabilizer, or at least not longer term with same.  But bipolar I and bipolar II are basically treated the same way, as far as med's go (there are some psychotherapies being tested for BPI that have not been applied yet to BPII, and may not be as relevant there in some cases).  

Anyway, you can tell that when it comes to diagnosis, I'm a "lumper" not a "splitter".  

Dr. Phelps


Published May, 2002 


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