Introduction

Pharmacotherapy constitutes the mainstay of treatment for bipolar disorder. Nevertheless, for individuals suffering from bipolar disorder, treatment with pharmacotherapy alone is associated with incomplete remission (Goodwin & Jamison, 1990), substantial risk for recurrence (Gitlin et al., 1995), and persistent impairments in functioning (Coryell et al., 1993). Psychotherapies that address psychosocial difficulties and enhance illness management (that is, medication adherence, and detection of warning signs of relapse) may play an important role in bridging the gap between symptom improvement brought about by medications and a full recovery from illness. Indeed, a growing body of research suggests that, when compared to treatment with pharmacotherapy alone, treatment with the combination of medication and a bipolar-specific psychotherapy results in better outcomes for patients (Craighead et al., 1998; Kusumakar et al., 1997; Swartz & Frank, 2001). Current expert treatment guidelines recommend the combination of psychotherapy and medication for the acute management of bipolar depression and during the maintenance phase of the disorder (American Psychiatric Association, 2002). Thus, psychotherapy is considered an integral component of treatment for individuals suffering from bipolar disorder. In this chapter, we will describe interpersonal and social rhythm therapy (IPSRT), a bipolar-specific psychotherapy currently being tested in a large clinical trial at the University of Pittsburgh.

Bipolar Disorder Uncovered

Bipolar Disorder Uncovered

If you're wanting to learn about bipolar disorder... Then this may be the most important letter you'll ever read! You are about to take an in-depth look at bipolar disorder. It's all you need to know about bipolar disorder to help you or a loved one lead a normal life. It doesn't matter if you or a loved one have been recently diagnosed or been struggling with bipolar disorder for years - This guide will tell you everything you need to know, without spending too much brainpower!

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