This research project is in progress. PCORI will post the research findings on this page within 90 days after the results are final.
What is the research about?
Bipolar disorder is a long-term mental illness that affects about 5.7 million people in the United States. People with bipolar disorder have severe changes in mood, energy, and activity levels. Sometimes people with this illness may feel overly happy and full of energy. They may also have a false sense of reality or delusions. Other times, they may feel depressed and have low energy or suicidal thoughts. These periods, called mood episodes, can last for days or months.
There are more than 50 medicines to treat bipolar disorder. However, doctors don’t know which treatments work best over the long term. In this study, the research team is comparing the safety and effectiveness of common medicines for bipolar disorder.
Who can this research help?
Results from this study may help doctors and patients choose treatment for bipolar disorder. Professional groups may use the results to improve their recommendations on how to treat this illness.
What is the research team doing?
The research team is reviewing anonymous medical information from 2003 to 2015 for 1.3 million patients with bipolar disorder. The team is looking at how common medicines for bipolar disorder affect the risk of
- Hospital visits
- Suicide attempts or self-harm
- Kidney disease
- High blood pressure or cholesterol
In addition, the team is looking at how well treatments for bipolar disorder work for men compared with women and for people who
- Have different types of bipolar disorder
- Are in different age groups
- Have other health problems
- Take medicine for other health problems
Patients, family members, patient advocates, and doctors are advising the research team. Patients are taking part in focus groups to review findings and propose ideas for sharing results with the public.
Research methods at a glance
- Alicia Smith, NAMI Montana
- Emma Volesky, NAMI Montana
- Quentin Schroeter, NAMI Montana
- Jason DeShaw
- Alan Hess
- Matt Kuntz, NAMI Montana
- Kimmie Jordan, NAMI New Mexico
- Sharon Dunas, NAMI Westside Los Angeles
Other Stakeholder Partners
- Nathaniel Hurwitz, New Mexico Behavioral Health Institute
- Ronald Krall, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
- Patrick Ryan, Janssen Research & Development Headquarters
- Mauricio Tohen, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center
- Annette Crisanti, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center
- Douglas Perkins, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center
- Aurélien Mazurie, Montana State University
- Berit Kerner, University of California Los Angeles
- Stan Young, CGStat LLC
- Robert Obenchain, Risk Benefit Statistics