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Trial Evaluates Lithium for Pediatric Bipolar

TeenA national study lead by researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago seeks to evaluate lithium for the treatment of bipolar disorder in children and adolescents.

“Lithium is the prototype mood stabilizer for treating adult bipolar disorder, but it is not FDA-approved for use in kids younger than 13,” said Mani Pavuluri, director of the Pediatric Mood Disorders Clinic at UIC’s Institute for Juvenile Research.

“We do not have a perfect drug that cures all aspects of bipolar disorder, but knowing more about lithium — and how it affects children — may bring us closer to managing this devastating disorder.”

Results from the Collaborative Lithium Trials will provide the first comprehensive analysis of lithium treatment for pediatric bipolar disorder, according to Pavuluri.

UIC researchers are recruiting patients between 7 and 17 with bipolar disorder. The study will evaluate medication dosage strategies, drug efficacy, and short- and long-term safety and tolerability.

Pediatric bipolar disorder, also known as manic depressive disorder, is characterized by extreme and unusual changes in mood, ranging from mania to depression.

Symptoms of mania can include extreme or persistent euphoria or irritability, inflated self-esteem, increased energy and a decreased need for sleep. Depressive symptoms may include physical complaints such as headaches, tiredness, lack of interest in activities, or social isolation.

In children, the disorder interferes with normal, healthy functioning and is associated with suicide, school failure, and risk-taking behaviors such as sexual promiscuity and substance abuse.

The prevalence and incidence of pediatric bipolar disorder is unknown.

“Lithium has proven to be effective in preventing future episodes of bipolar disorder and reducing suicidal thoughts in adults,” said Pavuluri, who leads the UIC trial.

“This study will help us to determine if lithium may have a similar protective effect in pediatric patients and help us to develop future treatment protocols.”

Source: University of Chicago

Trial Evaluates Lithium for Pediatric Bipolar

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2015). Trial Evaluates Lithium for Pediatric Bipolar. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 25, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2007/07/18/trial-evaluates-lithium-for-pediatric-bipolar/1025.html

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 6 Oct 2015
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 6 Oct 2015
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.