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Unformatted text preview: Brief Report Gender differences in the phenomenology of bipolar disorder Gender differences in the phenomenology of bipo- lar disorder have not been studied often and the results are conﬂicting. Three studies have found that women more often experience depressive episodes and men more often experience manic episodes (1–3) but other studies have not found gender differences in polarity (4–6). Women have been found to experience more lifetime psychotic episodes in one study (7) but not in others (8, 9) and no difference between genders has been found in the prevalence of psychotic depression (10). A major reason for the controversy may be that the studies included patients from tertiary univer- sity centers or specialized mood disorder clinics. Such patients may have been selected in various ways, which may inﬂuence the gender composition of subtypes of bipolar disorder in unpredictable ways. Another major reason for the diverging findings may be recall bias of prior affective episodes (6, 7). Although two of the mentioned studies were conducted in a prospective design, retrospective data on prior episodes were included (2, 5). As register data are collected routinely on diagnoses in Denmark and hereby avoiding mis- classification due to recall bias and as these data are nationwide we found it relevant to present data from a case register study including data on all Kessing LV. Gender differences in the phenomenology of bipolar disorder. Bipolar Disord 2004: 6: 421–425. ª Blackwell Munksgaard, 2004 Objectives: To investigate gender differences in the phenomenology of episodes in bipolar disorder as according to ICD-10. Methods: All patients who got a diagnosis of a manic episode/bipolar disorder in a period from 1994 to 2002 at the first outpatient treatment ever or at the first discharge from psychiatric hospitalization ever in Denmark were identified in a nationwide register. Results: Totally, 682 outpatients and 1037 inpatients got a diagnosis of a manic episode/bipolar disorder at the first contact ever. Significantly more women were treated as outpatients than as inpatients. Women were treated for longer periods as inpatients but not as outpatients. In both settings, the prevalence of depressive versus manic/mixed episodes was similar for men and women and the severity of manic episodes (hypomanic /manic without psychosis/manic with psychosis) and the severity of depressive episodes (mild/moderate/severe without psychosis/ severe with psychosis) did not differ between genders. The prevalence of psychotic symptoms at first contact was the same for both genders. Among patients treated in outpatient settings more men than women presented with comorbid substance abuse and among patients treated during hospitalization more women than men presented with mixed episodes....
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- Spring '11
- Social Psychology, First Contact