Persons with bipolar spectrum disorders (BSD) suffer from somatic symptoms at a rate nearly double that of the general population, a rate similar to persons with unipolar depression (UPD), a recent study found. Researchers conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of empirical studies published between 1980 and 2015, comparing the odds for somatic symptoms in BSD with UPD and general population or mixed psychiatric controls. Out of 2,634 studies, 23 were eligible for inclusion, yielding a total of 106,785 patients. They found:
• The estimated prevalence of somatic symptoms in BSD was 47.8%.
• The estimated prevalence of BSD in persons with somatic symptoms was 1.4%.
• Persons with BSD had a higher prevalence of somatic symptoms compared with population or mixed psychiatric controls.
• Persons with BSD had a similar prevalence of somatic symptoms compared with UPD controls.
Citation: Edgcomb JB, Tseng CH, Kerner B. Medically unexplained somatic symptoms and bipolar spectrum disorders: A systematic review of meta-analysis. [Published online ahead of print June 14, 2016]. J Affect Disord. doi:10.1016./j.jad.2016.06.029.
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