Monday, September 18, 2017

Connections Between Bipolar Disorder and Diabetes

Psychiatrist Susan Turner

As a privately practicing psychiatrist, Dr. Susan Turner maintains a sub-specialization in the treatment of co-morbid bipolar disorder and diabetes. Dr. Susan Turner understands the many interactions involved in the two conditions and is committed to creating effective treatment plans for each individual patient.

Compared to the average individual, patients with bipolar disorder are three times as likely to develop diabetes. Research has revealed that this dramatic increase stems largely from the fact that 54 to 68 percent of patients with bipolar disorder are obese or overweight. Obesity stands out as a contributing cause of metabolic syndrome, which raises a patient's risk of high blood glucose levels and in turn can lead to this development of diabetes.

Scientists have attributed this connection largely to the use of medications often prescribed to treat the symptoms of bipolar disorder. Antipsychotic and anti-epileptic medications are particularly likely to lead to weight gain, especially if the patient takes an antipsychotic alongside a mood-stabilizing pharmaceutical.

Data has also revealed that patients with both bipolar disorder and diabetes respond less effectively to treatment for either disorder. These patients tend to struggle with more severe presentations of their mental illness and are more likely to experience cognitive changes, including psychosocial challenges and abnormal energy metabolism in the brain.

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Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons alumna Dr. Susan Turner completed her residency training at the Columbia Presbyterian and New...