Recognition and diagnosis of bipolar disorder
Bipolar disorder is a serious, recurrent, and sometimes chronic psychiatric illness that is far more prevalent than many physicians realize. It often is unrecognized and misdiagnosed, particularly in patients presenting with depression. The consequences of misdiagnosis and mistreatment as unipolar depression may be disastrous. The rate of recognition may be improved by asking patients about bipolar symptoms and by screening for bipolar disorder using the Mood Disorder Questionnaire.