Bipolar Disorder Differential Diagnoses

Updated: Feb 11, 2022
  • Author: Stephen Soreff, MD; Chief Editor: Glen L Xiong, MD  more...
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Diagnostic Considerations

The diagnosis of bipolar disorder, or manic-depressive illness (MDI), is based on the patient’s history and clinical course.

Other conditions to be considered include the following:

  • Epilepsy

  • Fahr disease

  • Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)

  • Medications (eg, antidepressants can propel a patient into mania; other medications may include baclofen, bromide, bromocriptine, captopril, cimetidine, corticosteroids, cyclosporine, disulfiram, hydralazine, isoniazid, levodopa, methylphenidate, metrizamide, procarbazine, procyclidine)

  • Circadian rhythm desynchronization

  • Cyclothymic disorder

  • Multiple personality disorder

  • Oppositional defiant disorder (in children)

  • Substance abuse disorders (eg, with alcohol, amphetamines, cocaine, hallucinogens, opiates)

Differential Diagnoses