Which symptoms best distinguish unipolar and bipolar depression?
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Individually, irritability and psychomotor agitation are not more strongly associated with bipolar disorder than major depression. However, the longitudinal presence of agitation and retardation (termed “psychomotor disturbance”) is associated with bipolar disorder. Still, the association is modest and experts recommend a probabilistic approach to diagnosing bipolar depression, as well as conducting ongoing assessments for manic or hypomanic episodes.
Evidence Based Practice 13(2): 13+.