Bipolar Disorder


Bipolar disorder is a mental illness that brings severe high and low moods and changes in sleep, energy, thinking, and behavior. Patients who have bipolar disorder can have periods in which they feel overly happy and energized and other periods of feeling very sad, hopeless, and sluggish. In between those periods, they usually feel normal.

It usually starts when people are in late adolescents or young adulthood. The causes are complex. Genes, brain changes, and stress can all play a role. Bipolar disorder can run in families.

In a study, the research team recruited 16 patients with bipolar depression. The participants were divided into two groups. The first group received “cranial electro-therapy stimulation” for 20 minutes five days a week for 2 weeks, which is similar to electro-acupuncture. The second group received sham treatment. In this group, the cranial electro-therapy stimulation device was turned on and off. The results showed that the first group receiving cranial electro-therapy stimulation had a decrease in depression symptoms and body pain. The cranial electro-therapy stimulation also improved their quality of life and cognitive functioning when compared with the second group. The research team concluded that cranial electro-therapy stimulation may prove to be an effective and low-risk treatment for patients with bipolar depression.

In a review of two clinical trials, the aim was to provide preliminary data on the safety, effectiveness, and acceptability of adjunctive acupuncture in the acute treatment of bipolar disorder. Acupuncture proved to improve the patients’ symptoms- mood elevation and depression.



Dennehy, EB et al. “The Safety, Acceptability, and Effectiveness of Acupuncture as an

Adjunctive Treatment for Acute Symptoms in Bipolar Disorder.” The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry., U.S. National Library of Medicine, July 2009, Link.

McClure, Deimante, et al. “A Pilot Study of Safety and Efficacy of Cranial Electrotherapy

Stimulation in Treatment of Bipolar II Depression.” The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 12 Nov. 2015,  Link

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