International Bipolar Foundation
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Greetings all!

Thank you all who diligently voted for us in the Pepsi Chellenge. The competition was fierce, and alas, we did not win. Don't worry, we'll still print the Healthy Living with Bipolar Disorder book, just need to find the funds elsewhere.

If you haven't purchased tickets yet for our fun, fast paced game show, Click!, get your tickets now. Only 4 tables remain.

Muffy Walker

P.S. Please contact me at anytime:

January 20, 2011
If you are in a crisis,
please call:

1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433)
1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Join Our Mailing List
Bipolar Links
Looking for a fun and exciting way to make a difference for someone with bipolar disorder?  Are you competitive?  Do you like to watch your friends and family do ridiculous and silly things on stage?  Do you yourself??? Then get ready for:

 A fun and interactive trivia game show where YOU are the entertainment!
 In teams (tables) of ten, you and your friends will compete for a spot on stage by answering trivia questions.     It is all in good fun and educational, too - expect to learn about what your loved one or coworker deals with when they have a mental illness.  Of course, there will be great food and drink!   It's all for a great cause - help us raise money and awareness so that we can continue our work to reduce stigma and promote research. 
Friday, February 25, 2011
Hilton Torrey Pines
em for more information or
to purchase tickets $200 each.
Don't miss out on this fun, fast-paced game show starring YOU!
Only 4 tables remain



Case Western Reserve Receives $7.8M To Study Mania In Children

The Department of Psychiatry at Case Western Reserve University School of

Medicine has received a $7.8 million renewal grant from the National Institute

of Mental Health (NIMH) for the long-term study of manic symptoms in children.



Safety and Tolerability of Lamotrigine: Results From 12 Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trials and Clinical Implications

Clinical Neuropharmacology, 01/28/2011 

Seo H-J et al. - The authors focus on the data regarding the safety and tolerability of lamotrigine in the treatment of bipolar disorder gathered from 12 placebo-controlled trials, regardless of publication status, that were sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline. The authors also inform clinicians of practical issues in safety and tolerability in the use of lamotrigine in the treatment of bipolar disorders.



Universities, College Students and Mental Health


With the recent tragedy allegedly perpetrated by suspended college student Jared Loughner in Tuscon, AZ, the role of colleges' and universities' student counseling centers has taken center stage. This is a little odd, given that Mr. Loughner attended a community college that lacked a student counseling center. Most community colleges - catering to part-time students who often have families or hold down full-time jobs - don't seem to have the mental health counseling centers that most traditional universities and colleges have.

read more here



ECT's Final Days?


We may be witnessing electroconvulsive therapy's final days. This week, a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) panel will review whether there's enough evidence to downgrade electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) devices into the Class II medical device category - that is, a medical device that carries only "medium risk." Like a syringe.

read more here




More Than $3 Million Grant To Develop Therapies For Biological Clock Disorders

Medical News Today

The Scripps Research Institute has been awarded $3.17 million over four years to develop compounds that will counteract disruptions of the human biological clock - the circadian rhythm that regulates our patterns of activity and rest over a 24-hour daily cycle. Circadian rhythm disruptions have been associated with sleep disorders, as well as bipolar disease and schizophrenia.



UM seeks volunteers for new clinical trial for bipolar disorder

U-M Health System News

The University of Michigan is seeking participants for a new clinical trial to compare the effectiveness of two medicines commonly used to treat bipolar.



Alexza Intends To Refile Application For Bipolar Treatment In July

Wall Street Journal

Alexza Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ALXA) said it hopes to refile its new drug application for its schizophrenic and bipolar disorder treatment with the US FDA.  




Dear Friend & Advocate

Determined to be a more effective advocate this year? Lost and looking for advocacy tips? We've got them!

Spend some time in the Wrightslaw Advocacy Center.

Advocates teach parents how to negotiate for their children. Seasoned advocates share effective advocacy strategies, ideas, tools, and tips that will enable you to become an equal participant in the IEP process.


The Bipolar Disorder Survival Guide, Second Edition:  

What You and Your Family Need to Know

bipolar guide 

David J. Miklowitz, PhD
"A practical, straightforward book that will be a great help to those who have bipolar illness, as well as their families. I could not recommend this book more highly."
- Kay R. Jamison, PhD, author of An Unquiet Mind
A bipolar diagnosis can be overwhelming to sufferers and their family members. They need trustworthy information and support for finding the right treatment and coping with the illness's devastating ups and downs. Over 200,000 readers have already found exactly that in this indispensable guide from an award-winning expert. Explaining the disorder's causes, diagnosis, and best current treatments, David J. Miklowitz shows how to plan for and reduce recurrences of mood symptoms, make needed lifestyle changes to stay well, and strengthen relationships strained by the illness. Readers love the user-friendly tone, true-to-life stories, checklists, worksheets, and practical problem-solving advice. Updated throughout, the second edition has a new chapter, "For Women Only"; the latest facts on medications and therapy; and an expanded discussion of parenting issues for bipolar adults.
David J. Miklowitz, PhD, an award-winning researcher, is Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Medicine, and Senior Clinical Researcher at Oxford University. He also directs the Child and Adolescent Mood Disorders Program at the UCLA Semel Institute. Dr. Miklowitz's publications include the acclaimed book for parents The Bipolar Teen, as well as influential books for professionals on understanding and treating bipolar disorder. He lives in Los Angeles.


Tardive Dyskinesia is a movement disorder caused by long-term use of certain psychiatric drug, most notably antipsychotic medications. The symptoms of tardive dyskinesia include uncontrolled facial movements, and hand, arm and leg movements can also occur. This is a very serious side effect, and symptoms of tardive dyskinesia should be reported to your prescribing physician as soon as possible after they appear.
For an in-depth look at tardive dyskinesia, the drugs that cause it, symptoms and treatment, see: about T.D.



We are excited to announce an essay contest for high school students in San Diego & Imperial counties. Attached is the registration form and flyer with contest rules.



International Bipolar Foundation is dedicated to erasing the stigma associated with mental illness. We have found that one way to educate the public is to have students write an essay about their perception of how mental illness & its associated stigma will be perceived in 2012.



Please share this information with your students. Essays will be read by a panel of authors who write books, both fiction & non-fiction, about bipolar disorder.



Entries should be submitted to no later than midnight April 15, 2011. Winner announced May 6, 2011. The first place winner should expect to read his/her essay at a luncheon on May 26 featuring Margaret Trudeau, wife of ex-Prime Minister to Canada.



The winner will receive two lawn tickets for the 2011 season at the Cricket Amphitheater in Chula Vista and the second place winner, $100.00.


To receive essay contest rules or if you have any questions.

please contact



$389 Scholarships Now Available!

Space is limited, RSVP by February 3, to Rosella Aplin at to reserve your spot.


Treating the Challenging Child

The Collaborative Problem Solving Approach


February 9-11, 2011

Manchester Grand Hyatt

One Market Place, San Diego, CA 92101

8:00 am - 8:45 am

Registration & Continental Breakfast

8:45 am -4:00 pm



Distinguished Speaker

Ross W. Greene, Ph.D.

Associate Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School


The Bipolar Lens  blog

terri cheney
It's official!  My new Psychology Today blog is called "The Bipolar Lens:  My View from the Roller-coaster."  I hope to publish every two weeks or so.  My first entry is called "The Naked Truth:  What It's Like to Strip Bare After Years of Covering Up."

You can catch me at:

And watch for my new book, The Dark Side of Innocence:  Growing Up Bipolar, coming out March 1st from Simon and Schuster. 

Enjoy the ride!


How SAD Affects Bipolar Disorder

About 20 percent of bipolar patients experience a mood shift based on seasonal sunlight. Learn about seasonal bipolar disorder and how to cope with it.

By Debra-Lynn B. Hook
As many as 20 percent of bipolar disorder patients can track their moods by looking at the calendar: If winter is coming on, they can expect to have seasonal depression. If it's spring, they might experience mania or hypomania.

"This seasonal component is related to the amount of sunlight," says Melvin McInnis, MD, director of psychiatry programs at the University of Michigan Depression Center in Ann Arbor. "In the wintertime, people are more depressed. The patient says, 'Every January, I start to go down.' Then in the spring, the amount of sunlight destabilizes their mood to the point of them becoming manic and hypomanic. We [doctors] often refer to the 'manic month of May.'"

Seasonal Affective Disorder vs. Seasonal Bipolar Disorder

Doctors have long distinguished between seasonal depression and seasonal bipolar disorder. Commonly referred to as SAD or seasonal affective disorder, seasonal depression is a mood disorder brought on by the biological effects of a lack of sunlight. Typically experienced in the late fall and winter, it is particularly prevalent in northern regions.

What distinguishes seasonal bipolar disorder from SAD is the presence of a manic episode within a given period of time.

"What happens historically is that we ask patients and we ask family members if they've also seen signs or symptoms of a manic or hypomanic episode, thereby qualifying bipolar mood disorder," says psychiatrist David J. Muzina, MD, vice chair for research and education and associate professor of medicine in the department of psychiatry and psychology at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio. "If we don't find that past history, then that person who has the seasonal winter response only has a depressive disorder."

Seasonal Shifts in Mood: Who Is Affected?

Why do some patients experience a seasonal component to their bipolar disorder and others don't? One of the most prominent developing theories has to do with circadian rhythms - the "biological clock" - the body's internal, rhythmic response to changes in a 24-hour day, especially sunlight. This response is controlled by a complex set of genes commonly referred to as "clock genes." If only some of these genes are abnormal, you could develop seasonal bipolar disorder.

"This is a subset of pattern within the overall population," says Dr. Muzina. "We guess people with seasonal disorder have some genetic predisposition because of problems within those clock genes."

Bipolar Disorder and Seasonal Depression: Treatment Options

If you and your doctor determine that your bipolar disorder has a seasonal component, he or she may suggest various treatment options, particularly related to depressive episodes, which tend to be more severe for the patient with seasonal bipolar disorder:

Movement, meditation, and therapy. If the depression is mild, you may not need additional medication. Rather, you may be able to manage your depression with yoga, talk therapy, meditation, and exercise, and by maintaining the same routine every day, especially related to sleeping and waking.
Light therapy. Light therapy, such as special light boxes used 30 minutes a day, can be helpful. But light therapy must be used carefully. "Light therapy has the potential of inducing a manic reaction in the person with bipolar disorder," says Muzina. "Too much bright light can turn a person from being depressed to hypomanic or manic or rapid-cycling, going from highs to lows very quickly."
Melatonin. If the depression is severe, light therapy may be indicated in combination with additional medications, such as melatonin. Melatonin, a naturally occurring chemical transmitter that helps regulate circadian rhythms, has been long used in synthetic form to reset the abnormal clock for people suffering from jet lag or insomnia.
The good news about seasonal bipolar disorder relates to the management of your symptoms. Unlike some patients with bipolar disorder, you can anticipate the coming of your mood shift simply by watching the calendar. You and your care team can be prepared with a solid treatment plan in hand.


˙Forward the newsletter from across "the Pond"

Incorporating BI-POLAR NEWS
Issue Number 70

Read newsletter


TAKE TIME TODAY to register YOUR WALK TEAM!  It is important that we show up together, unified, and fighting to end stigma and discrimination for all those with a mental health diagnosis and their families! 

To register:

 NAMI San Diego
 Free Education & Advocacy Meeting
Thursday, February 3, 2011 -6:30 p.m.

Family Finances and Mental Health

Do you need to change your financial strategy in order to reach your family's goals?

6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

University Christian Church; Friendship Hall 
3900 Cleveland Ave. San Diego, California

Boost your mental and physical health 
Feb 23rd at NAMI San Diego 'Hearts and Minds' workshop!

Research has shown that due to a number of preventable health factors, people living with mental illness, on  average, die much sooner than others.  The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) in San Diego wants to do something about that  statistic!
NAMI San Diego will be holding the first annual Hearts and Minds Wellness Workshops and Resource Fair to help people learn effective techniques to better take care of themselves.
People with mental illness are much more likely to have classic heart-risk factors, such as cigarette smoking, obesity, diabetes, elevated cholesterol and hypertension (high blood pressure), some of which can be compounded by some anti-psychotic medications. The risk factor for diabetes and "metabolic syndrome" (a condition that can be a precursor to diabetes) is also greater for those taking atypical anti-psychotic medications.
Join us for the first HEARTS AND MINDS program
WHEN: February 23, 2011
WHERE: Marina Village Conference Center, Baja Room
TIME: 10 am to 2 pm
THE PROGRAM: Speakers will range from Nutrition to Smoking Cessation to Dance and Exercise Movements. There will also be a resource fair with dozens of local health and wellness organizations to help educate the public on how to best utilize their services.
The Hearts and Minds seminar is free of charge and open to the public. NAMI encourages anyone who wants to learn more about keeping their minds and bodies in optimal health to attend.
TO RSVP email Annie Dunlop at



2011 U.S. Psychiatric and Mental Health Congress:


November 8-9, 2011

Las Vegas

Conference dates: November 7-10

The Venetian Hotel & Congress Center



The 2011 Prospectus and sponsorship information will be available next month. To view current information and documents, please visit


IEP Day Conference
28th Annual Involved Exceptional Parents' (IEP) Day Conference
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Handlery Hotel in Mission Valley, San Diego


Gold Standard for Treating Bipolar Disorder

Written by Julie A. Fast      
Authoritative information regarding all aspects of treatment for bipolar disorder, from getting a correct diagnosis to bipolar medications, therapy and lifestyle changes. Written by award-winning mental health author, Julie Fast, exclusively for

Everything You Need to Know About Bipolar Treatment in Plain English

Bipolar disorder is a brain disorder that affects a person's ability to regulate moods. The main cause of bipolar disorder is a chemical imbalance in the brain, but the illness also involves genetic, environmental and other factors. Bipolar disorder is complex illness that affects an estimated 15,000,000 people in the United States alone and naturally leads to considerable problems in a person's life; especially when bipolar disorder is not being treated successfully. People with bipolar disorder are often seen as out-of-control, lazy, difficult or just plain crazy. This makes sense when looking from the outside, as a person with constantly changing moods can be very hard to live with. However, from an internal perspective, people with bipolar disorder know that these mood swings are not by choice and that extensive help is needed to get them under control.

As you start your bipolar disorder treatment plan, there are four questions you should be able to answer:

1. Do I have a correct and thorough diagnosis?

2. Who can help me manage bipolar disorder effectively?

3. What is my optimum medications treatment?

4. What can I do to manage the illness comprehensively along with my medications?

About the International Bipolar Foundation
International Bipolar Foundation is a not for profit organization based in San Diego whose mission is to eliminate Bipolar Disorder through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support services for all affected; and to erase associated stigma through public education.
Visit us online for more information:
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Please join us on Facebook and "Like" us and help us spread the word.
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A Word About Funding
Please note that International Bipolar Foundation does not represent any pharmaceutical company or give any speeches for a pharmaceutical company nor does our site receive advertising dollars from any company.