Doctor insights on:
Can Taking An Anticonvulsant For Bipolar Disorder Cause You To Have Seizures
No unless stopped: Anti seizure medication actually protects against seizures and does not cause seizures. However, if you suddenly stop the medication without taper and have been on it awhile you're at risk of having a seizure. This can happen even if you haven't had a seizure before. That is why it is a good idea to taper the medicine down before stopping it. ...Read more
Also known as manic-depressive illness, bipolar disorder is a brain disorder that in its most severe form causes dramatic shifts in mood, from mania to depression. Symptoms of mania include markedly elevated mood and energy, reduced sleep and a reduced need for sleep, racing thoughts, and grandiose ideas. When mood changes are severe, psychotic ideation may be present. Symptoms of depression can include low energy, feeling sad, feelings of guilt and hopelessness that are out of proportion to the patient's actual situation, low motivation, inability to experience pleasure, and suicidal ideation. Sleep may be increased, and concentration may be impaired. Some manic patients may be extremely irritable rather than euphoric. Less severe but clearly abnormal mood ...Read more
No.: Caffeine use definitely does not cause either seizures or bd, nor is there a link between seizures and bd. Although a number of anticonvulsants turn out to be effective treatments for bd too, that does not mean that bd is a seizure disorder. Often, classes of medications work for a variety of unrelated disorders. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
No, depends: If you are in the depths of depression, or spinning in a manic episode when your IQ is tested, you won't score as well as you ordinarily would. That said, depression & bipolar patients tend to be brighter than average. Interesting question. Why do you ask? ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
I heard the bornavirus is a major cause of bipolar disorder. How common is this virus in the U.S.?
Not likely accurate: "Absence of evidence for bornavirus infection in schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depressive disorder." (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22290118) indicates "Our results argue strongly against a role for BDV in the pathogenesis of these psychiatric disorders." ...Read more
We Don't Know: We really do not know what causes bipolar disorder and we do not know what happens to the brain in folks with bipolar disorder. It would be great if we did, but we don't. There is ongoing research trying to unlock the secrets to many brain diseases. I think, in the next decade or so, there will be many great discoveries in this area. Stay tuned. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
Lots of research: Nothing is certain yet, but researchers are finding abnormalities in the structure and/or function of certain brain circuits that could underlie bipolar. There is also work in brain chemical interactions with stress hormones. Brain injuries and some diseases along with genetic tendencies may all play parts. In the end, there is interference in mood intensity regulation and stabilization. It's hard. ...Read more
Is there a medication comparable to Abilify (aripiprazole) to treat bipolar disorder that doesn't cause weight gain?
Potentially Yes: Ability does not cause weight gain with the same frequency as some other meds. There are similar meds that may be less likely to contribute to weight gain, such as saphris (asenapine) or geodon. There are is also another class of meds, the anticonvulsants, which are used fir bipolar disorder and which may not cause a problem with weight. Not everyone will experience the same side effects with the same med. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
Could seroquel (quetiapine) cause bipolar disorder in previously healthy patients? I feel very strange on it. One minute im happy the other, miserable.:-(
Inadequate treatment: Seroquel (quetiapine) is not a cause of bipolar disorder. Suboptimal dosing may reduce the likelyhood of therapeutic response. Regardless, treatment needs to be individualized. Seroquel (quetiapine) may not be well tolerated by some or provide relief for others. Other treatment options exist. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Multifactorial: As with many medical conditions the causes of bipolar disorder are not fully know. It is believed they are polygenetic, with multiple genes interacting resulting in some degree of vulnerability or resistance to the condition. This biology then interacts with environmental factors, both positive and negative which can have different effects based upon when in life or how many/often they occur. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
Though depression is not required for diagnosis most people have both manic and depressive episodes and may have mixed episodes with features of both. Length of episodes vary, but are separated by "normal" periods of emotion and behavior. See my answers to similar ...Read more
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