Here could be a worthwhile avenue of research on mobile phone use by young people. Could mobile phone use be a factor in bipolar disorder and/or should it be considered in treatment? Perhaps the apparent “surge” may be just due to over-diagnosing or better reporting as mark Olfson suggests below but the advice of the Russian National Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (RNCNIRP) should be considered. Not only to they advise against mobile phone use by children but they specifically state that people with neurological conditions should not use phones as it could worsen the symptoms. However, the problem Yuri Grigoriev mentioned to me at the 2004 Mobile phone conference in Moscow is that this age group are so addicted to their phones, preventing their use would cause depression and withdraw symptoms.
Interesting that parents are so worried about drug addiction with their children but are oblivious to the same thing when it comes to their kids using mobile phones.
From World Science
Surge in youth bipolar disorder diagnoses seen
Sept. 4, 2007
Courtesy NIH/National Institute of Mental Health
and World Science staff
The number of visits to a doctor’s office that led to a diagnosis of bipolar disorder in youths has risen 40-fold in the U.S. over the last decade, researchers have found.
The surge probably reflects a “recent tendency to overdiagnose bipolar disorder in young people, a correction of historical under-recognition, or a combination of these,” said Mark Olfson of Columbia University’s New York State Psychiatric Institute in New York, a member of the research team. “Clearly, we need to learn more” about how doctors are diagnosing the disorder in children and adolescents.
Bipolar disorder is a mental illness characterized by cycles of depression and elation, or mania.
Also over the past decade, the number of visits by adults resulting in a bipolar disorder diagnosis almost doubled, Olson’s team found, adding that the cause of this is also unclear. The study is published in the September issue of the research journal Archives of General Psychiatry.
Doctors face tough questions when deciding on treatment for young people, Olfson and colleagues said. Guidelines for treating adults with bipolar disorder are well-documented, but few studies have looked at the effects of psychiatric medications for treating children and adolescents with the disorder. Despite this limited evidence, the researchers found similar treatment patterns for both age groups in terms of psychotherapy and prescription medications.
Of the medications studied, mood stabilizers, including lithium, were prescribed in two-thirds of the visits by youth and adults, the team found. Anticonvulsant medications, such as valproate (Depakote) and carbamazepine (Tegretol), were the most frequently prescribed type of mood stabilizers.Leave a reply →