Researchers at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim conducted a study consisting of 210 participants (53.3% women) with bipolar I (68.1%) and bipolar II (31.9%) to identify factors linked to bipolar cycle acceleration (rapid cycling).
They found the following factors (listed in order of importance):
- Severity of episodes – there was a higher chance of rapid cycling when individual episodes were more severe.
- Depression dominant bipolar – There was a suggestion that rapid cycling was more likely with depression-dominant bipolar disorder.
- Bipolar II disorder, especially where depression was the first mood episode, had a higher rate of rapid cycling.
- Severe mania reduced the frequency – There was a negative correlation with the number of hospitalizations for mania.
- Positive correlation with hypomanic or manic episodes triggered by alcohol use or antidepressants.
- As with previous studies, women had a higher risk of rapid cycling.
What do you think about these conclusions? I would love to hear from people who identify and don’t identify with these factors to see if they experience cycle acceleration differently!