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Bipolar II Disorder

Recognition, Understanding, and Treatment

Edited by Holly A. Swartz, M.D., and Trisha Suppes, M.D., Ph.D.

  • ISBN 978-1-61537-178-5
  • Item #37178

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Unlike its cousin, bipolar I disorder, which has been extensively studied and depicted in popular literature and on screen, bipolar II disorder is poorly understood, underdiagnosed, and insufficiently treated. Bipolar II Disorder: Recognition, Understanding, and Treatment is the only text on the market that examines every aspect of the disorder in an up-to-date, rigorous, and clinically oriented manner. The editors, experts on the diagnosis and treatment of this neglected illness, have gathered a group of contributors who together advance the reader's knowledge of the disease in a systematic, accessible way, identifying and addressing the challenges of diagnosis and treatment and exploring current thinking on the biological determinants of the disorder. Acknowledging potential pitfalls of differential diagnosis, the book examines psychiatric comorbidities that most typically co-occur with bipolar II, such as anxiety disorders, impulse-control disorders, and borderline personality disorder. Next, the book focuses on the growing body of evidence that suggests that the underlying biology of bipolar II is distinct from that of other mood disorders and discusses the increasingly important role that neuroimaging plays in the diagnosis and understanding of bipolar II disorder as research progresses. Finally, the text explores how to manage bipolar II disorder, providing an up-to-date review of medication options and psychosocial treatments.

The book's strengths are many and compelling:

  • Individual chapters are written by experts in the fields of phenomenology, genetics, neuroimaging, psychopharmacology, psychotherapy, child psychiatry, and reproductive mental health who review what is currently known about bipolar II disorder and its management.
  • A special chapter on suicide describes a framework for understanding risk and a clinical model for conducting suicide risk assessment specific to individuals with bipolar II disorder. The chapter underscores factors associated with increased risk in bipolar II disorder and identifies strategies to mitigate that risk.
  • Written for a professional audience, the book may also be of interest to patients who want to learn more about their own diagnosis and to those who wish to support them.
  • Fascinating case vignettes and concise key points are provided throughout the text, helping readers to understand and contextualize the most important information in each chapter for easy reference and review.
  • Although advances have been made in understanding bipolar II disorder since the diagnosis was first codified in 1994, many gaps remain in the evidence base, particularly related to optimal treatments and neurobiology, and the book examines future directions for inquiry.

For years, clinicians had little guidance for diagnosing and treating bipolar II disorder, relying on treatment options for bipolar I disorder, which were inadequate and of limited efficacy. Bipolar II Disorder: Recognition, Understanding, and Treatment responds to these frustrations with evidence-based, substantive, and up-to-the-minute information, demystifying the disorder and equipping the reader to provide the highest standard of care.


  • Preface
  • Chapter 1. A Neglected Condition
  • Part I: Recognition
  • Chapter 2. Diagnosing Bipolar II Disorder
  • Chapter 3. Interface Between Borderline Personality Disorder and Bipolar II Disorder
  • Chapter 4. Psychiatric and Medical Comorbidities
  • Chapter 5. Suicide and Bipolar II Disorder
  • Part II: Understanding
  • Chapter 6. Genetics of Bipolar II Disorder
  • Chapter 7. Functional Brain Imaging and Neural Determinants of Bipolar II Disorder
  • Part III: Treatment
  • Chapter 8. Mood Stabilizers and Antipsychotic Medications in Bipolar II Disorder
  • Chapter 9. Antidepressant Medications: Special Considerations in Bipolar II Disorder
  • Chapter 10. Psychosocial Interventions in Bipolar II Disorder
  • Part IV: Special Populations
  • Chapter 11. Bipolar II Disorder in Childhood and Adolescence
  • Chapter 12. Reproductive-Age Women With Bipolar II Disorder


    Boris Birmaher, M.D.
    Crystal T. Clark, M.D., M.Sc.
    Sarah DeBrunner, M.D.
    Marina Garriga, M.D.
    Alex Israel, M.D.
    Nicole Kramer, M.A., M.S.
    Anna Manelis, Ph.D.
    Susan L. McElroy, M.D.
    Melvin McInnis, M.D.
    Roger S. McIntyre, M.D., F.R.C.P.C.
    Theresa A. Morgan, Ph.D.
    Eydie L. Moses-Kolko, M.D.
    Danielle M. Novick, Ph.D.
    Michael J. Ostacher, M.D., M.P.H., M.M.Sc.
    Mary L. Phillips, M.D., M.D.(Cantab.)
    Manivel Rengasamy, M.D.
    Joshua D. Rosenblat, M.D.
    Ayal Schaffer, M.D., F.R.C.P.C.
    Mark Sinyor, M.Sc., M.D., F.R.C.P.C.
    Adriane M. Soehner, Ph.D.
    Eva Sole, M.D.
    Trisha Suppes, M.D., Ph.D.
    Holly A. Swartz, M.D.
    Eduard Vieta, M.D., Ph.D.
    Katherine L. Wisner, M.D., M.S.
    Mark Zimmerman, M.D.

About the Authors

Holly A. Swartz, M.D., is Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Trisha Suppes, M.D., Ph.D., is Professor in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine in Palo Alto, California and on staff at the Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, California.

The overall quality of this book is high. It is divided into short topics with relevant subtitles and has unique key points summaries at the end of each chapter, enhancing retention of critical learning points. The treatment section is up to date with appropriate evidence when available, and boldly addresses controversial topics of treatment with antidepressants.—Daniel M. Tuinstra, M.D., Doody's Book Review

This volume presents a comprehensive review of current knowledge about bipolar II disorder by noted authors in the various subject areas that are covered.—David L. Dunner, M.D., FACPsych, Journal of Psychiatric Practice

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