Document Detail

Lithium in maintenance therapy for bipolar disorder.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16551668     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Lithium has been used for the medical treatment of bipolar disorder for over 50 years. The purpose of this paper is to review the evidence base supporting the use of lithium in the maintenance phase of treatment of bipolar disorder and the limitations which reduce the clinical effectiveness of this medication. A selective review of the relevant literature was carried out. It is concluded that lithium is efficacious in the maintenance phase treatment of bipolar disorder, with the available evidence supporting a beneficial effect which prevents recurrence of mania; it is less clear if lithium prevents depressive episodes in bipolar disorder. A number of lines of evidence support the notion that lithium reduces suicidal acts and completed suicide. Lithium has a significant side effect burden and a narrow therapeutic index. It is also associated with an increased liability for new episodes, both manic and depressive, consequent upon stoppage of treatment. These factors limit the clinical effectiveness of lithium.
Allan H Young; James I Newham
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of psychopharmacology (Oxford, England)     Volume:  20     ISSN:  0269-8811     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Psychopharmacol. (Oxford)     Publication Date:  2006 Mar 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2006-03-22     Completed Date:  2006-09-07     Revised Date:  2007-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8907828     Medline TA:  J Psychopharmacol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  17-22     Citation Subset:  IM    
University of Newcastle, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.
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MeSH Terms
Antimanic Agents / adverse effects,  therapeutic use*
Bipolar Disorder / diagnosis,  drug therapy*,  psychology
Clinical Trials as Topic
Evidence-Based Medicine
Lithium Carbonate / adverse effects,  therapeutic use*
Long-Term Care
Meta-Analysis as Topic
Recurrence / prevention & control
Suicide / prevention & control
Treatment Outcome
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Antimanic Agents; 554-13-2/Lithium Carbonate

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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