Rapid cycling as a feature of bipolar disorder and comorbid migraine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Authors

  • K. Gordon-smith
  • L. Forty
  • C. Chan
  • S. Knott
  • I. Jones
  • N. Craddock

Abstract

Background
Previous research has suggested the clinical profile of individuals with bipolar disorder (BD) differs according to the presence or absence of comorbid migraine. We aimed to determine the clinical characteristics that differentiate individuals with BD with and without comorbid migraine in a large, representative, clinically well-characterised UK sample.

Methods
The lifetime clinical characteristics of 1488 individuals with BD (BPI n=1120, BPII n=368) with and without comorbid migraine were compared (n=375 vs. n=1113 respectively).

Results
Individuals with BD and comorbid migraine had a distinctive set of lifetime clinical characteristics. A multivariate model showed that consistent with previous studies those with comorbid migraine were significantly more likely to be female (OR=2.099, p=0.005) and have comorbid panic attacks (OR=1.842, p=0.004). A novel finding was that even after controlling for other differences, the individuals with BD and comorbid migraine were more likely to have a rapid cycling illness course (OR=1.888, p=0.002).

Limitations
Presence of migraine was assessed using self report measures. Cross-sectional study design limits investigations of bidirectional associations between migraine and bipolar disorder.

Conclusions
Comorbid migraine in BD may represent a more homogenous subtype of BD with an unstable rapid cycling course. Identifying individuals with BD and comorbid migraine may be of use in a clinical setting and this subgroup could be the focus of future aetiological studies.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)320-324
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
Volume175
Early online date22 Jan 2015
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2015

Keywords

  • Bipolar disorder, Migraine, Comorbidity, Rapid cycling