Differences in clinical characteristics between bipolar patients with current psychotic symptoms and those who have never been psychotic

Zsuzsanna Belteczki, Zoltan Rihmer, Julia Ujvari, Dorian A. Lamis, Peter Dome

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)


Background: Psychotic symptoms are common in bipolar disorder (BD). Data suggest that BD patients with or without psychotic symptoms may differ from each other with regards to some clinical features of BD (e.g., age at onset, suicidality, psychiatric comorbidity, number of hospitalizations). However, the literature in this area is relatively scarce and not always conclusive. Therefore, the objective of the current study was to investigate whether the presence of psychotic symptoms is associated with clinical characteristics of patients with BD. Subjects and methods: We enrolled 365 hospitalized patients who were diagnosed with BD according to the ICD-10 criteria. After we excluded 196 patients without current psychotic symptoms but psychotic mood episodes in their medical history, our final sample consisted of 169 patients (i.e., 89 BD patients presenting with current psychotic symptoms and 80 BD patients who were hospitalized in the same period, but who did not have psychotic symptoms either currently or during their previous hospitalizations). Clinically available data were collected, systematized and statistically processed according to the aims of the study. Results: Early age of onset, bipolar-I diagnosis, comorbid personality disorder, number of hospitalizations and suicidality were significantly more common in the psychotic group compared to the never-psychotic group. On the contrary, sedative/hypnotics dependence was more frequent in the never-psychotic group. Conclusions: Our results support the notion that the presence of psychotic symptoms in the context of BD may be associated with various other clinical features of this disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-188
Number of pages6
JournalPsychiatria Danubina
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Age at onset
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Depression
  • Mania
  • Psychotic
  • Suicidality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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