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What tests should be taken to detect bipolar disorder?

I m 23yrs old and think I may be bipolar. I m currently seeing a psychologist. Bipolar disorder runs in my family. Is there any sure way to know that I am? I fear my doctor will take me as dramatic or exaggerating... My sessions thus far have been hurried and I m somewhat unsure if I should continue treatment through her. To wrap this up, what is the proper way to go about bipolar testing, or whatever I need to do? I m at my wits end with all these ups, downs, and constant mind dilemas. Please help.
Asked On : Wed, 31 Oct 2012
Answers:  2 Views:  51
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General & Family Physician 's  Response
Hello nowlin8 , greetings from 

I am Dr Sourav Chakraborty and i have gone through case scenario , i would like to inform you that diagnosis of bipolar disorder is purely a clinical entity or in other words your doctor/ psychiatrist need to interact with you more and more to diagnose and rule out bipolar disorder Diagnosis is based upon abnormalities in behavior reported by your family members, friends, co-workers or your primary physician in a clinical assessment. There are lists of criteria for someone to be so diagnosed to be having bipolar disorder . These depend on both the presence and duration of certain signs and symptoms which is beyond this discussion . Assessment is usually done on an outpatient basis and you need to be open to your psychiatrist and try to answer his/her questions freely as you can , rarely admission to an inpatient facility is advocated if there is a risk to oneself or others. Like i said it is purely a clinical diagnosis where your psychiatrist will check your multi planar mental and emotional health and stability. Changing your psychiatrist will not help and i firmly advocate against it , provided if he/she is a certified/qualified individual but long term cooperation is needed from your side. Hope i have been able to help you with your doubts and please do forgive me for grammatical errors , if any. Take care. 

Answered: Wed, 31 Oct 2012
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Psychiatrist Dr. Sundar Gnanavel's  Response
Thanks for your query. I would like to clarify that psychiatric illnesses like bipolar disorder unlike other physical illnesses is not diagnosed by any laboratory investigation. The diagnosis is based on a careful history from patient, family members and serial mental state examinations of the patient. Hence, you need to trust the clinical acumen of your treating psychiatrist. Wish you speedy recovery.
Dr Sundar
Answered: Wed, 27 Feb 2013
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