For other uses of the term, see: Bipolar Bipolar disorder (previously known as manic depression) is a diagnostic category describing a class of mood disorders in which the person experiences states or episodes of depression and/or mania, hypomania, and/or mixed states. Left untreated, it is a severely disabling psychiatric condition. The difference between bipolar disorder and unipolar disorder (also called major depression) — for the purpose of this introduction — is that bipolar dis ...
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Signs and symptoms
... Bipolar disorder is characterized by an alternating pattern of emotional highs (mania) and lows (depression). The intensity of the signs and symptoms varies. Bipolar disorder can range from a mild con...
Source: MayoClinic

... Doctors and researchers don''t know exactly what causes bipolar disorder. But a variety of biologic, genetic and environmental factors seem to be involved in causing and triggering episodes of this il...
Source: MayoClinic

Risk factors
... Bipolar disorder tends to run in families. A family history appears to exist in about 60 percent of cases of bipolar disorder. Researchers are attempting to identify genes that may make people suscept...
Source: MayoClinic

When to seek medical advice
... People with bipolar disorder often don''t recognize how impaired they are when experiencing a mood episode and how greatly the disorder is affecting their lives and the lives of others. Friends, famil...
Source: MayoClinic

Screening and diagnosis
... Your doctor may ask you or a family member who has accompanied you about your signs and symptoms and to describe apparent episodes of mania and depression. Diagnosis also involves ruling out other men...
Source: MayoClinic