Alcohol Use Tied to Mood Instability in Patients With Bipolar Disorder

However, increased mood symptoms not associated with subsequent alcohol use
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FRIDAY, June 7, 2024 (HealthDay News) -- Alcohol use is associated with mood instability (depression and manic symptoms) in people with bipolar disorder (BD), according to a study published online June 7 in JAMA Network Open.

Sarah H. Sperry, Ph.D., from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and colleagues characterized the longitudinal alcohol use patterns in BD and examined the temporal associations among alcohol use, mood, anxiety, and functioning over time. Analysis included data from 584 participants in the Prechter Longitudinal Study of Bipolar Disorder. Participants had a BD type I (76.2 percent) or BD type II (23.8 percent) diagnosis.

Over a median follow-up of nine years, the researchers found that more problematic alcohol use was associated with worse depressive and manic or hypomanic symptoms as well as lower workplace functioning over the next six months. Increased depressive and manic or hypomanic symptoms were not associated with greater subsequent alcohol use. Associations were more pronounced in BD type II, compared to BD type I. Over time, alcohol use was not associated with anxiety.

"Findings of this study suggest there is an association of alcohol use with mood and work functioning, highlighting the importance of dimensional and longitudinal assessment and management of alcohol use, which should be integrated into research and standard treatment of BD," the authors write.

One author disclosed ties to Janssen Pharmaceuticals.

Abstract/Full Text

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