New Treatment Options for Bipolar Depression Continue to Evolve
Bipolar disorder (bipolar I or II) is a mental health condition that is characterized by unusual swings in emotions or behavior. These swings, or mood episodes, can cause you to experience both lows (depression) and highs (mania). While cycling between lows and highs can be common, bipolar depression (the lows) often occurs much more frequently than manic or hypomanic episodes (the highs).
If you think you may have bipolar disorder, you're not alone. Approximately 11 million adults in the United States are affected by bipolar disorder, making it a really common condition. It's also the second leading cause of disability among common mental and physical conditions worldwide, with 87% of patients reporting severe impairment due to depressive episodes.
Understanding the Different Types of Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar I is characterized by having experienced at least one manic episode that lasted a week or more, or required hospitalization. A feeling of losing touch with reality can occur up to 75% of manic episodes and may cause significant functional impairment. In addition to manic episodes, patients with bipolar I often struggle with episodes of depression. When ill, individuals spend 70% of their time struggling with depression.
Bipolar II lacks the extreme “high” seen in bipolar I and is often characterized by depressive episodes that have a greater frequency and severity. When ill, individuals with bipolar II spend 81% of their time struggling with depression.
Research shows that two out of three individuals with bipolar disorder (I or II) are initially misdiagnosed with major depression instead of bipolar disorder. On average, individuals who are misdiagnosed see 4 doctors before receiving an accurate diagnosis of bipolar disorder.
The Impact of Bipolar Depression
While there are key differences between the signs and symptoms of bipolar I and bipolar II, individuals with both bipolar I or II spend the majority of their time struggling with depression. During a bipolar depression episode, individuals often feel sad or hopeless, may lose interest or pleasure in most activities and may experience struggles with anger and emotions. Bipolar depressive episodes are often very debilitating to everyday life and can damage friendships, relationships and overall day-to-day functioning.
Finding a Treatment Plan for Bipolar Depression
While the cause of bipolar disorder is not fully understood, researchers are working to learn how to best treat bipolar depression. With approximately 69% of individuals with bipolar disorder initially receiving a misdiagnosis, it's important for patients to have an open conversation with their healthcare provider and speak candidly about their symptoms and how they affect their day-to-day life. This will help achieve a proper diagnosis and ultimately, an appropriate treatment plan.
A new treatment option for individuals struggling with bipolar depression is CAPLYTA® (lumateperone). CAPLYTA is a once daily prescription medication that can treat depressive episodes in adults with either bipolar I or II and can be taken by itself or along with lithium or valproate.
To learn more about CAPLYTA visit www.caplyta.com.
Important Safety Information
Medicines like CAPLYTA can raise the risk of death in elderly people who have lost touch with reality (psychosis) due to confusion and memory loss (dementia). CAPLYTA is not approved for treating people with dementia-related psychosis.
CAPLYTA and antidepressant medicines may increase suicidal thoughts and actions in some children, adolescents, and young adults, especially within the first few months of treatment or when the dose is changed. Depression and other serious mental illnesses are the most important causes of suicidal thoughts and actions. Patients and their families or caregivers should watch for new or worsening depression symptoms, especially sudden changes in mood, behaviors, thoughts, or feelings. This is very important when CAPLYTA or an antidepressant medicine is started or when the dose is changed. Report any change in these symptoms to your doctor immediately.
Do not take CAPLYTA if you are allergic to any of its ingredients. Get emergency medical help if you are having an allergic reaction (e.g., rash, itching, hives, swelling of the tongue, lip, face, or throat).
CAPLYTA may cause serious side effects, including:
- Stroke (cerebrovascular problems) in elderly people with dementia-related psychosis that can lead to death.
- Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS): high fever, confusion, changes in your breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure, stiff muscles, and increased sweating; these may be symptoms of a rare but potentially fatal condition. Contact your doctor or go to the emergency room if you experience signs and symptoms of NMS.
- Uncontrolled body movements (tardive dyskinesia, TD) in your face, tongue, or other body parts. TD may not go away, even if you stop taking CAPLYTA. It may also occur after you stop taking your medication.
- Problems with your metabolism including high blood sugar, diabetes, increased fat (cholesterol and triglyceride) levels in your blood and weight gain. Your doctor should check your blood sugar, fat levels and weight before you start and during your treatment with CAPLYTA. Extremely high blood sugar levels can lead to coma or death. Tell your doctor if you have symptoms of high blood sugar, which include feeling very thirsty, hungry, sick to your stomach, weak/tired or needing to urinate more than usual.
- Low white blood cell count. Your doctor may do blood tests during the first few months of treatment with CAPLYTA.
- Decreased blood pressure (orthostatic hypotension). You may feel lightheaded, dizzy, or faint when you rise too quickly from a sitting or lying position.
- Falls. CAPLYTA may make you sleepy or dizzy, may cause a decrease in your blood pressure when changing position (orthostatic hypotension), and can slow your thinking and motor skills which may lead to falls that can cause broken bones or other injuries.
- Seizures (convulsions).
- Sleepiness, drowsiness, feeling tired, difficulty thinking and doing normal activities. Until you know how CAPLYTA affects you, do not drive, operate heavy machinery, or do other dangerous activities.
- Problems controlling your body temperature so that you feel too warm. Avoid getting overheated or dehydrated while taking CAPLYTA.
- Difficulty swallowing that can cause food or liquid to get into the lungs.
The most common side effects of CAPLYTA include sleepiness, dizziness, nausea, and dry mouth.
These are not all the possible side effects of CAPLYTA. Tell your doctor if you have or have had heart problems or a stroke, high or low blood pressure, diabetes, or high blood sugar, problems with cholesterol, have or have had seizures (convulsions), kidney or liver problems, or a low white blood cell count. CAPLYTA may cause fertility problems in females and males. You should notify your doctor if you become pregnant or intend to become pregnant while taking CAPLYTA. CAPLYTA may cause abnormal involuntary movements and/or withdrawal symptoms in newborn babies exposed to CAPLYTA during the third trimester. When taking CAPLYTA, you should not breastfeed. Tell your doctor about all the medicines you're taking. CAPLYTA may affect the way other medicines work, and other medicines may affect how CAPLYTA works, causing possible serious side effects. Do not start or stop any medicines while taking CAPLYTA without talking to your healthcare provider. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs. Contact Intra-Cellular Therapies, Inc. at 1-888-611-4824 or FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or www.fda.gov/medwatch.
Please see Medication Guide, including Boxed Warnings.
CAPLYTA is available in 42 mg capsules.
If you're affected by bipolar depression, have a conversation with your doctor about CAPLYTA today.
New Treatment Options for Bipolar Depression Continue to Evolve (Sponsored). (2022). WebMD. https://www.webmd.com/bipolar-depression-explained