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    cognitive problems and bipolar disorder
    Joseph F Goldberg, MD posted:
    Hi all,

    There have been a number of posts regarding cognitive problems in bipolar disorder. May I humbly share as a resource the link (posted) for a book of mine entitled "Cognitive Dysfunction in Bipolar Disorder." Though it's written for clinicians, I think it's pretty accessible and may help answer some questions about the types of cognitive problems that are inherently part of bipolar disorder (especially bipolar I disorder), and the effects of medicines, both good and bad.

    - Dr. G.
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    Sojourner_1 responded:
    Thank you for the resource! Very much appreciated. I attempted to talk with my pdoc about this topic yesterday and she didn't listen...I left feeling very frustrated. Sometime soon I hope to find a better doc, when I get health insurance.

    I'm so glad you have expertise in this area.
    snowyowl33 responded:
    Thanks Doc, will see if we have it up here... ..... does it also mentions ways to combat some of these cognitive problems?

    Joseph F Goldberg, MD replied to snowyowl33's response:
    Dear Snowyowl,

    Yes, to a degree....but unfortunately there are very few, and quite limited approaches to combating cognitive problems.

    Dr. G.
    snowyowl33 replied to Joseph F Goldberg, MD's response:
    How very sad that we have so few solutions to help with cognitive problems, but so many ways to create them.....
    maybe one day........

    Thanks Doc

    oldnotwise responded:
    I look on Your book is not a price many of us can afford. Some cannot work and are struggling to make ends meet. I'm sure you mean well, but have you thought of that?
    Joseph F Goldberg, MD replied to oldnotwise's response:
    Dear oldnotwise,

    I would imagine your local library would have a copy, or could perhaps order one if you asked.

    The book is a medical textbook written for professionals rather than patients, but because of the interest raised here on the exchange, i thought it worth mentioning as a reference for those who might be looking for information on the topic. Unfortunately I don't know that anyone has written anything specifically on this topic directed to a patient audience.

    - Dr. G.
    bela24 responded:
    Dr. Goldberg,

    My niece is cognitively delayed because of brain damage due to a genetic disorder. She is having many issues with anxiety, depression, and acting out. She has a tentative diagnosis of bipolar II. I would like to help my sister find resources, such as others who have gone through similar issues. Trying to get help for my niece is very frustrating for my sister.

    Joseph F Goldberg, MD replied to bela24's response:
    Dear bela24,
    Hopefully you will find support and useful input from other people who post on this website. The cognitive problems associated with bipolar disorder can be relatively subtle, particularly in bipolar II (rather than bipolar I) disorder, and mainly involve problems with attentional processing, verbal memory and planning/organization. Cognitive problems from a separate conditions may involve separate types of deficits. A thorough neuropsychological test battery should help to define the types of cognitive problems present, and also provide a benchmark for tracking them over time. Some medicines for bipolar disorder or anxiety can interfere with cognitive function -- notably, lithium, benzodiazepines, and some atypical antipsychotics -- while others tend to be more cognitively benign (e.g., SSRIs and other antidepressants, lamotrogine, non-antihistaminergic antipsychotics). Your niece's doctor would want to take all these factors into consideration when thinking about medicines that may best help her mood and anxiety symptoms.

    Dr. G.

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