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Evaluated response to xanax. Whose mood benefited had symptoms of bipolar. Is bipolar type of seizure disorder?

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Practicing since : 2003
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in the early 1980s while i was in my psychiatric internship i was randomly selected to participate in a study with about twenty other psychiatrists to evaluate patient responses to xanax which was just coming on the market andwas going to be marketed as an antidepressant. Approxiately 60%of us agreed that our patients felt that indeed their mood did improve.I noted that the ones whose mood benefited had symptions suggestive of bipolar which made sense given the fact that benzos where first line for status epilepticus, another disorder caused by electrical instability.I have since decided that bipolar is a type of seizure disrder.What are your thoughts on this? I have grave concerns about the over use of atypicals as well as the cavalier prescribing of antidepressants which subtly ,but not picked up on often worsen mood swings and aggitation .

Posted Wed, 3 Jul 2013 in Mental Health
Answered by Dr. Nehal Shah 24 minutes later
Thanks for using healthcare magic.

Xanax , contains alprazolam is basically anti anxiety drug. Many our depressed patients might have anxiety as their symptoms also. Alprazolam may also cause sedation also. As sleep and anxiety is improving with alprazolam, patient well being is improved and hence mood also.

Bipolar are separate entity than a type of seizure disorder as there are many evidences also. e.g, Lithium, which is not an anti epiletic drug is considered as gold standard treatment for bipolar mood disorder.

In bipolar patients also, particular in depressed or mixed variety, alprazolam may bring some relief but it can not be considered as treatment of choice.

Many atypical antipsychotics like aripirazole or risperdione or olanzapine has prooved their efficacy in bipolar mood disorder so they need to be considered first line of treatment rather than alprazolam while treating bipolar mood disorder.

Anti depressant may switch form depressed mood to elation so it is better to be avoided or should be given under cover of mood stabilizers in bipolar mood disorder patients.

While using alprazolam, its abuse potential has to be kept in mind.
I hope I have addressed your concern.

Feel free to revert to me in case if you have any query.

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