Unipolar mania reconsidered: evidence from an elderly cohort. Academic Article uri icon


  • Earlier studies have failed to differentiate the unipolar manic subtype from bipolar patients with both manic and depressive episodes. This retrospective cohort study of 50 elderly manic in-patients identified six patients (12%) who met strict criteria for a course of unipolar mania. Significant differences emerged in age at onset, with a mean of 41.2 years for unipolar mania compared with 64.7 years for the others. Consequently, clinical course was significantly longer, 27.7 v. 7.4 years. Elderly patients pursuing a unipolar manic course are among the very few elderly 'bipolars' whose illness begins early in life. Recent neuroradiological investigations and data from geriatric studies suggest that the concept of unipolar mania is worthy of further investigation.

publication date

  • April 1994