11 doctors weighed in:
How is bipolar disorder different from major depression?
11 doctors weighed in

Dr. Kevin Passer
Pediatrics - Psychiatry
6 doctors agree
In brief: Bipolarvs Depression
Actually, according to the criteria used, one may have only ever had manic moods, or mania, and qualify for the diagnosis of bipolar disorder.
That is why the term manic-depression is confusing. One may never have been depressed at any time, and still have bipolar disorder.

In brief: Bipolarvs Depression
Actually, according to the criteria used, one may have only ever had manic moods, or mania, and qualify for the diagnosis of bipolar disorder.
That is why the term manic-depression is confusing. One may never have been depressed at any time, and still have bipolar disorder.
Dr. Kevin Passer
Dr. Kevin Passer
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2 comments
Dr. Neil Liebowitz
Bipolar disorder tends to have more frequent cycles and requires different medications to treat. Meds helpful for major depression may make Bipolar worse. Bipolar is not always an easy to diagnose since the "highs" might have occurred many years prior to the lows and viewed as just wild youthful indiscretions or just forgotten .
Dr. Alan Ali
Challenge to differentiate Major Depressive episode from Bipolar Depressed phase. History here helps.
Dr. Susan Uhrich
Psychiatry
4 doctors agree
In brief: Mania
By definition, in bipolar disorder th person must have had one episode of mania or mixed presentation.

In brief: Mania
By definition, in bipolar disorder th person must have had one episode of mania or mixed presentation.
Dr. Susan Uhrich
Dr. Susan Uhrich
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Dr. Robert Gerstman
Psychiatry
4 doctors agree
In brief: Lability
Bipolar disorder has discrete periods of depression in addition to discrete periods of feeling "too good".

In brief: Lability
Bipolar disorder has discrete periods of depression in addition to discrete periods of feeling "too good".
Dr. Robert Gerstman
Dr. Robert Gerstman
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