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A 18-year-old female asked:

My 17yr old friend has severe mood swings.1 time she's happy, 1time she's depressed.she refuses therapy.she tried 2 kill others and herself.wats wrong?

3 doctor answers8 doctors weighed in
Dr. Pamela Pappas
Psychiatry 44 years experience
Difficult situation: It sounds like your friend may possibly have a serious psychiatric disorder such as bipolar disorder. This can cause the type of problems you describe. So can abuse of drugs and alcohol. If your friend is 17, her parents need to get her to a psychiatrist for evaluation and help asap. Medications may help a lot -- and therapy too. Her illness may be interfering with accepting treatment.
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Dr. Judith Lieberstein
31 years experience
Potential life threa: Attempt to "kill" others is serious. Patient confidentiality may not apply in presence of danger to others.She apparently poses a threat to her life and the life of others. Patient may need crises intervention if she refuses therapy and medication. This fact pattern appears to justify involving a state agency.
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Psychiatry 28 years experience
See a doctor.: She should see a mental health professional who can take a thorough history and do a full evaluation before making a diagnosis such as bipolar disorder. She should also see her primary care physician to rule out other medical causes of her mood swings. Pcos has been associated with depression and may cause mood swings. Fluctuations in blood sugar can also cause mood swings.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Donald Jacobson
A Verified Doctor commented
A US doctor answered Learn more
See if your legal system will allow for court-ordered treatment and hospitalization against her will. Check with the local police and make sure they are aware that she is both suicidal and homicidal. They will then be able to guide you as to what you can do to initiate what in the United States is referred to as a chapter or an involuntary hospitalization. Best wishes.
Nov 16, 2013
Dr. AUSTINA CHO commented
Psychiatry 28 years experience
Provided original answer
I agree, a medical evaluation for physical health issues can wait until after hospitalization for emergency reasons if she is acutely suicidal or homicidal. It definitely sounds like she has started to develop symptoms of a severe bipolar disorder. Hopefully, she has access to a child psychiatrist where she lives.
Nov 17, 2013
Last updated Sep 30, 2020


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