Given the nature of the illness and its sub-clinical forms,
clinical experience indicates that a significant period of time may
elapse between initial presentation and formal diagnosis of bipolar
disorder (previously known as manic depression).
Bipolar disorder is a cyclical illness with three distinct
- acute mania
- depressive episodes, and
- maintenance therapy, including hypomania and mild
Effective treatment of bipolar disorder includes the anticipation
and detection of acute manic or depressive episodes, monitoring of
the safety and efficacy of treatment regimes and screening for
psychiatric and physical comorbidity.