ALPHA PSYCHIATRY
Original Articles

The effect of residual symptoms on clinical characteristics and functioning of patients with bipolar disorder in remission

Alpha Psychiatry 2013; 14: 228-236
DOI: 10.5455/apd.40630
Read: 833 Downloads: 461 Published: 01 June 2013

Objective: The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between the residual symptoms of patients with Bipolar Disorder (BD) in remission and their sociodemographic, clinical and treatment-related characteristics and their effect on functioning. Methods: The study group consisted of BD patients who were in remission and met the inclusion criteria of the study. The patients were assessed in a single cross-sectional interview. Results: A total of 120 patients (54.2% women) were included in the study. Those who never got married had significantly more manic residual symptoms than those who were married and divorced/widowed. The Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) scores of the married group were significantly higher than those of the patients who never got married and were divorced/widowed. The GAF scores of those employed came out to be significantly higher than those of the unemployed, housewives and retired. Depressive residual symptoms and having the disease at a younger age had more prominent negative effects on functioning, the last attack experienced had an impact on the residual depressive symptoms and the accompanying anxiety symptoms, and the reasons that made the patients to come to regular doctor monitoring were mostly depressive symptoms and the decline in general functioning. Only 23.4% of the patients were monitored with a single mood stabilizer and 75% of them used at least 2 medications, but no statistically significant relationship was found between the treatment received by the patients and their residual symptoms and functioning. Conclusion: Since BD affects psychosocial functioning to a large extent, it is becoming increasingly important today to identify the characteristics of the disease, to monitor patients regularly and continuously, and to plan their treatment. Many variables that determine the nature of residual symptoms and contribute to functioning alongside residual symptoms are factors that prevent BD patients from forming a homogeneous group and demonstrating a similar prognosis. This makes it important to develop a different treatment strategy specific to each BD patient. [Anadolu Psikiyatri Derg 2013; 14(3.000): 228-236]

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