Bipolar disorder may increase risk of Parkinson disease

In a new study, researchers found patients with bipolar disorder (BD) seem to have an increased risk for developing Parkinson disease (PD).

The research was conducted by a team from the University of Lisbon in Portugal and elsewhere.

BD is a mood disorder that has an early onset at a median age of 20 years.

It is a long-term and recurrent disorder characterized by cyclic episodes of depression and either mania or hypomania.

The team conducted a systematic literature review to examine the correlation of BP with a later diagnosis of idiopathic PD.

Seven studies that included data on the likelihood of developing PD in a BD versus non-BD population were included, with 4,374,211 participants.

The researchers found that the risk of a subsequent diagnosis of idiopathic PD was increased with a previous diagnosis of BD.

In a sensitivity analysis with removal of studies that had a high risk for bias, an increased risk for PD was seen in people with BD.

The team says the main clinical implication of this review should be to underline that if patients with BD present with parkinsonism features, this may not be drug induced and may recommend the investigation of PD.

There are implications for the care of patients with BD, namely with longitudinal motor assessments, monitoring for prodromal motor or nonmotor signs of PD, and eventually by parkinsonism risk mitigation via medication selections and nonpharmacological treatments.

The lead author of the study is Patricia R. Faustino, M.D., from the University of Lisbon.

The study is published in JAMA Neurology.

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