+ Site Statistics
+ Search Articles
+ PDF Full Text Service
How our service works
Request PDF Full Text
+ Follow Us
Follow on Facebook
Follow on Twitter
Follow on LinkedIn
+ Subscribe to Site Feeds
Most Shared
PDF Full Text
+ Translate
+ Recently Requested

Psychopharmacological treatment status in outpatients with bipolar disorder: a clinical survey in Germany



Psychopharmacological treatment status in outpatients with bipolar disorder: a clinical survey in Germany



Psychiatry Investigation 7(3): 155-162



The objective of this epidemiological study was to evaluate the current treatment status as well as the acceptance of medication and satisfaction with life in outpatients with bipolar disorder in Germany. Data for this cross-sectional epidemiologic survey was collected between February 15th, 2006 and May 31st, 2006. Three hundreds six bipolar euthymic outpatients under routine treatment conditions were included in the study. Forty one practicing psychiatrists used a clinical interview to evaluate the current treatment status, acceptance of current medication, and current life satisfaction. The majority of patients suffered from "pure" bipolar-II-disorder (50.6%), followed by 23.0% with "pure" bipolar-I-disorder. Apart from these patients, 12.9% of all participants had a history of mixed episodes and 5.6% a history of rapid cycling. Mean duration of bipolar disorder was 10.6 years. The majority of patients (54.3%) received psychopharmacological monotherapy. Combination therapy was administered in 45.9% of the patients, 39.3% receiving two agents, and 6.6% three agents. Antidepressants (64.1%) were the most common combination medications. Monotherapy was used preferably in bipolar-I- (62.7%) and bipolar-II-disorders (56.2%), combination therapy predominantly in patients with a history of mixed episodes (57.7%) and rapid cycling (55.0%). Half of the patients (49.2%) were able to hold an occupation. 84.2% of all patients were satisfied with their medication. Overall, patients evaluated their life satisfaction between "good" and "satisfactory" (2.69 according to German school grades where 1 is the highest and 6 the lowest mark). Patients receiving lithium, valproate or antidepressants as monotherapy rated above the mean, patients with combination therapy, carbamazepine monotherapy or medications summarized as "others" rated below the mean. Most of the German outpatients received a pharmacotherapy that is recommended in the guidelines of bipolar disorder. The use of (atypical) antipsychotics was low. Conversely, the incidence of treatment with tricyclic antidepressants (not guideline compatible), was observed to be relatively high. Irrespective of their medication, in Germany patients with bipolar disorder show a high acceptance of their pharmacotherapy, and rate their life satisfaction as high. Nonetheless, half of the evaluated patients were not able to pursue a profession. Besides the disease age, gender and family life e.g., child care may also play a confounding role regarding the unemployment statistics.

Please choose payment method:






(PDF emailed within 1 workday: $29.90)

Accession: 055275172

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 20927303


Related references

Understanding bipolar disorder in late life: clinical and treatment correlates of a sample of elderly outpatients. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease 201(8): 674-679, 2013

Treatment and outcomes of an Australian cohort of outpatients with bipolar I or schizoaffective disorder over twenty-four months: implications for clinical practice. Bmc Psychiatry 12: 228, 2012

Psychopharmacological treatment of bipolar disorder in Latin American. Revista de Psiquiatria Y Salud Mental 4(4): 205-211, 2011

Effect of adjunctive benzodiazepines on clinical outcomes in lithium- or quetiapine-treated outpatients with bipolar I or II disorder: results from the Bipolar CHOICE trial. Journal of Affective Disorders 161: 30-35, 2014

Brain Structural Effects of Psychopharmacological Treatment in Bipolar Disorder. Current Neuropharmacology 13(4): 445-457, 2015

Bipolar disorder: The importance of clinical assessment in identifying prognostic factors - An Audit. Part 3: A comparison between Italian and English mental health services and a survey of bipolar disorder. Psychiatria Danubina 26(Suppl. 1): 309-314, 2014

Trends in the psychopharmacological treatment of bipolar disorder: a nationwide register-based study. Acta Neuropsychiatrica 28(2): 75-84, 2016

Usefulness of the Spanish version of the mood disorder questionnaire for screening bipolar disorder in routine clinical practice in outpatients with major depression. Clinical Practice and Epidemiology in Mental Health 4: 14, 2008

Association between the so-called "activation syndrome" and bipolar II disorder, a related disorder, and bipolar suggestive features in outpatients with depression. Journal of Affective Disorders 151(1): 196-202, 2013

Cardiovascular risk factors in outpatients with bipolar disorder: a report from the Brazilian Research Network in Bipolar Disorder. Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria 35(2): 126-130, 2014

Psychopharmacological treatment of non-comorbid and comorbid pervasive developmental disorder and pediatric bipolar disorder. Minerva Pediatrica 60(1): 87, 2008

Utilization of Psychopharmacological Treatment Among Patients With Newly Diagnosed Bipolar Disorder From 2001 to 2010. Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology 36(1): 32-44, 2016

Differential clinical characteristics, medication usage, and treatment response of bipolar disorder in the US versus The Netherlands and Germany. International Clinical Psychopharmacology 26(2): 96, 2011

Treatment of bipolar disorder in the Netherlands and concordance with treatment guidelines: study protocol of an observational, longitudinal study on naturalistic treatment of bipolar disorder in everyday clinical practice. Bmc Psychiatry 14: 58, 2014

The Maudsley bipolar disorder project. Clinical characteristics of bipolar disorder I in a catchment area treatment sample. European Psychiatry 18(1): 13-17, 2003