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US National Institute of Mental Health reported that the number of patients diagnosed with bipolar rdisorder may be doubled if all the people were correctly diagnosed. Since bipolar is a spectrum disorder with symptoms likes depression, anxiety and substance abuse, the patients are being misdiagnosed with one of these disorders.

People with the mildest form of the condition, often referred to as sub-threshold bipolar disorder, usually sought treatment for other mental health conditions such as depression or substance abuse while they should be treated for this type of bipolar. Misdiagnose may have a lot of consequences as the drugs used for depression may actually trigger bipolar symptoms.

The study NIMH conducted showed that significant sub-threshold bipolar disorder is at least as common as threshold bipolar disorder.
Those people who met the clinical definition of sub-threshold bipolar disorder (70 %) were already receiving treatment when surveyed. Most of them were taking antidepressants while they should be taking lithium, a mood stabilizer, found to be the most effective in treatment of bipolar disorder.

The team of researchers who led the study concluded that clinicians who treat patients for depression, anxiety, or substance abuse must develop a higher suspicion of bipolar disorder.


I was 6 months pregnant when I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I was committed and made to take medications that damaged my baby. She has learning problems. I got my medical records and found out that I was given synthroid medications for my thyroid when she was just two months old. The doctors kept giving me lithum with my thyroid medications and I could not function on a daily basis. I finally had to take myself off of the lithum because the doctors would not, now I have neurological damages----forever-----