A decrease or increase in psychosocial disability in patients who suffer from bipolar disorder has been noticed with every decrease or increase in their depressive symptom severity. This has been revealed in the December 2005 issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry. Bipolar disorder is associated with suicidal behavior, and cycles of mania, abnormal elation, and depression are characterized by the disorder.
The Bipolar I disorder (BP-I) involves mania, while bipolar II disorder (BP-II) is characterized by depressive symptoms and fluctuating levels of manic symptoms. The study was conducted by researchers belonging to the University of California.
As many as 158 patients suffering from BP-1, and another 133 patients suffering from BP-II were analyzed by the researchers. The National Institute of Mental Health Collaborative Depression Study followed the development in the subjects for a period of 15 years. When the patient is ill, psychosocial disability and symptom severity fluctuate, according to the study.
The psychosocial functioning of the patients is good when they are asymptomatic. When the BP-I or BP-II patients do not suffer from mood disorders, their psychosocial functioning is normal. The findings reveal the advantages of analyzing BP-I and BP-II separately.