IBPF logo
From the International Bipolar Foundation, click to visit our website




Wow - each month I think we have accomplished the most ever and then I put this newsletter together and see we just keep getting better and better.

This newsletter is filled with exciting partnerships (ShareCare, bloggers, research partners, etc), more wonderful educational opportunities (our webinar with Dr. Pavuluri and lecture with John McManamy), our special Public Forum this May with The Honorable Patrick Kennedy and several awards honoring the work we do.

We are a mighty team but cannot do it without your help. Please donate $5.00 today so we can continue offering ALL of our PROGRAMS and SERVICES free of charge to you. Click here to make a tax deductible donation  donate

To your health,

Muffy Walker


P.S. Feel free to also contact me at anytime Muffy

Our new mailing address: 8895 Towne Centre Drive, Suite 105-360 San Diego CA 92122  



April 7, 2012   
If you are in a crisis,
please call:
1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433)
1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Join Our Mailing List
                                                   It's FINALLY here!!!!
International Bipolar Foundation is proud to announce the release of our book:
Healthy Living with Bipolar Disorder

The book is geared to both the person with bipolar disorder and their caregivers. Fourteen chapters, each written by an expert in the field, are included in a 3-ring binder.

The Consumer Advisory Board for IBPF felt it was important for people to have an easily accessible "compendium" of information. The binder format allows users to add handouts from their mental health providers and update chapters without having to order a new book.

Healthy Living with Bipolar Disorder is broken into 3-sections;

  1. About Bipolar Disorder including chapters on children & adolescents, suicide, substance abuse, medication treatment, stigma and pregnancy
  2. Healthy Living includes chapters on family life and relationships, nutrition, spirituality and faith, the workplace, college, social interactions and the caregiver
  3. Resources including Medication Charts (English & Spanish), Medication Side Effect Checklist, Mood Chart, Exercise Journal, Food Log, Doctor Contact Sheet, Questions to Ask Your Doctor, and U.S. and International Mental Health Resources.

In addition to these information rich chapters, the book has country-specific chapters written by consumers and professionals from countries around the world. There are currently eight such chapters with more being added weekly.


If you are a mental health organization, counseling center or provider and would like a hard copy mailed to you, please let us know. There is a $12 S&H fee. An online pdf version is free to everyone. Go to our web site www.InternationalBipolarFoundation.org or click here 





      IBPF Funds Adolescent Bipolar Research



International Bipolar Foundation (IBPF) is pleased to announce that they will fund a research project led by Dr. Hilary Blumberg at Yale University in New Haven, CT.  Hilary Blumberg 


As part of their mission to eliminate bipolar disorder through the advancement of research, IBPF funds scientists in the field of mood disorders. IBPF has both a Rising Star Partner Program and a program supporting established scientists.


After receiving a matching donation from an anonymous donor, IBPF put out a call for proposals addressing bipolar onset in adolescence. Dr. Hilary Blumberg's research project, The Development of Bipolar Disorder in Adolescence was chosen. Her research is devoted to understanding the development of bipolar disorder in adolescence. A focus is on studying how the brain develops in adolescents without the disorder and how that development differs in adolescents with the disorder. As bipolar disorder symptoms often emerge in adolescence, and Blumberg's findings have shown that adolescence is a critical period in the development of the brain circuitry differences that underlie symptoms, and the symptoms and course of bipolar disorder can differ between females and males, this highlights the importance of understanding effects of pubertal hormones on the development of the brain circuitry of the disorder. Many of the brain regions involved in bipolar disorder are sensitive to the effects of hormones. Blumberg and her team think that studying bipolar disorder at the time of its onset, and understanding how the hormones may alter brain circuitry development, could be instrumental in understanding how the disorder develops.


Blumberg, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Diagnostic Radiology and in the Child Study Center, and Director of the Mood Disorders Research Program at Yale School of Medicine is the principal investigator of the study. She has built an impressive team of researchers from many different scientific disciplines from throughout Yale to address the peri-pubertal period in the development of bipolar disorder. This includes experts from adolescent medicine and endocrinology, psychiatry, child psychiatry, psychology, brain imaging, genetics, as well as basic scientists who are investigating fundamental models of brain development in adolescence and factors that can alter development and cause vulnerability to bipolar disorder.


International Bipolar Foundation Joins ShareCare
    as Expert Organization on Bipolar Disorder
Sharecare is an interactive, social Q&A platform designed to greatly simplify the search for quality healthcare information and help consumers live their healthiest life. Sharecare is enlisting the nation's leading health experts, care providers, organizations, and brands to join the health and wellness conversation and empowering users with high-quality, relevant answers to their health questions from multiple expert perspectives and with interactive health and wellness tools to take action on what they've learned.
The website was launched in 2010 by Jeff Arnold, founder of WebMD, and Emmy-award winning host, Dr. Mehmet Oz, in partnership with Harpo Studios, Sony Pictures Television and Discovery Communications.   
Stay tuned, several of our Scientific Advisory Board members including Dr. Joseph Calabrese, Dr. Thomas Kensen, Dr. Mauricio Tohen and Dr. Michael Berk will be answering your questions about bipolar disorder. For now,  Go here to see our expert page
Our Lecture Series are now available for viewing on our web site!! Click here

Thursday, April 12, 2012 

Living with Someone who has Bipolar; Living with Someone who has "Normal"

Speaker: John McManamy
John McManamy is the author of "Living Well with Depression and Bipolar Disorder: What Your Doctor Doesn't Tell You That You Need to Know" (HarperCollins, 2006) and editor and publisher of the most extensive educational website devoted to depression and bipolar disorder, "McMan's Depression and Bipolar Web." He also contributes as an expert patient on HealthCentral's "BipolarConnect" and has his own blog, "Knowledge is Necessity." John was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1999 at age 49 following a suicidal depression and a lifetime of denial. Soon after, John put his experience as a financial journalist to work in researching and writing about his illness. John has also been involved in advocacy, having worked with the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance on local, state, and national levels. He is currently serving on the board of NAMI San Diego. In June 2007, in recognition of his mental health journalism, John received the Mogens Schou Award for Public Service from the Seventh International Conference on Bipolar Disorder. Says John: "Writing about my illness has played a very strong role in my healing and recovery. Writing allows me to come to terms with my past, gives meaning to my present, and gives me the courage to face the future with hope." John moved to the San Diego area nearly five years ago from the east coast. He is currently residing in Alpine.

5:30-6:00- SOCIAL 6:00-6:45-LECTURE 6:45-7:00- Q & A  

Location: Sanford Children's Research Center, Building 12 Address: 10905 Road to Cure, San Diego 92121  


Save the date for these lectures in La Jolla:       

    May 10, 2012- Suzanne Fiala, MD - pediatrician who has bp

    June 14, 2012- Lis Eyler, PhD - research project

    A special THANK YOU to Sanford|Burnham Medical Research Institute for donating the space for these lectures.
                                                                      sanford burnham

Therese's Corner  

Therese Borchard 



12 Depression Busters


Associate Editor


My therapist helped me to build a personalized "toolbox": a list of a dozen depression busters to direct me toward mental health, and an emergency lifeline in case I get lost along the way. I consult these 12 techniques when I panic, when I get pulled into addictive behaviors, and as armor in my ongoing war against negative thoughts. Here they are: twelve strategies to take us all to the promised land of recovery from depression. more here 


Our Next Webinar  

           Brain Biosignature in Pediatric Bipolar disorder:
A  step closer to serve and discover
with Dr. Mani Pavuluri

May 2, 2012
12:00 - 1:30pm PST

Mani Pavuluri, MD, PhD, is a Professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, Berger-Colbeth Endowed Chair in Child Psychiatry, and Director of the Pediatric Brain Research And Intervention (BRAIN) Center.    

Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar seat now here   

 Rachel Baird in the D.C. area says,"Thank you so much, I always appreciate the time and effort you guys take in providing these webcasts.  It is a wonderful tool."  

          International high school essay contest launched essay
Part of the International Bipolar Foundation's (IBPF) mission is to erase stigma associated with mental illness through public education. To that end, the Foundation has launched a global essay contest open to all high school students internationally.

"Our hope," says Muffy Walker, president and founder of IBPF, "is that students will be interested in winning the prize and thereby research stigma in order to write the essay. In so doing, we will be educating a lot of young people and hopefully changing their perception about mental illness."

The topic of the essay is "Changing the Future of Stigma; Bipolar Disorder in 2020." First and second place winners will be judged by a panel of authors who currently write about bipolar disorder and mental illness, and the winner will be announced in May to celebrate May as Mental Health Month.

In addition, the winner will receive $500 and second place earns $100. Both winners will have the opportunity to read their essay via Skype at the Foundation's Public Forum with former Congressman Patrick Kennedy on May 22.

For more information about the International Bipolar Foundation or to receive the essay rules and registration form, contact Ashley Reitzin: areitzin@internationalbipolarfoundation.org. For more information about the foundation, go to www.internationalbipolarfoundation.org.


A United Nations General Assembly Special Session for Mental, Neurological, and Substance Use Disorders: The Time Has Come Read the report here



Mental health research priorities in low- and middle-income countries of Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean


The results of the first ever conducted survey of researchers and stakeholders regarding research priorities in mental health suggest that it should be possible to develop consensus at regional and international levels regarding the research agenda that is necessary to support health system objectives in LAMI countries. here

Clinical profile and outcome of bipolar disorder patients receiving electroconvulsive therapy: A study from north India Full Text
Electroconvulsive therapy is useful in the management of acute phase of mania and depression. here

 Implementation of mental health service recommendations in England and Wales and suicide rates, 1997-2006: a cross-sectional and before-and-after observational study
The findings suggest that aspects of provision of mental health services can affect suicide rates in clinical populations. Investigation of the relation between new initiatives and suicide could help to inform future suicide prevention efforts and improve safety for patients receiving mental health care. here
New insight into acute inpatient psychiatric care
Some very interesting information has come to light following a study which has been conducted and published by Dr. Chris Papadopoulos (pictured) of the University of Bedfordshire (Institute for Health Research).  The study, a brainchild of Professor Len Bowers who leads a research programme into conflict and containment within acute psychiatric wards at the Institute of Psychiatry (Kings College London), suggests that it is the ward staff, and not the patients, who play the key role in influencing how much conflict and containment occur on psychiatric wards. here
Study shows mentally ill four times more likely to be victims of violence
News of investment in children's mental health
I'm delighted to tell you that the government is investing a further £22 million over the next three years to expand psychological therapies for children and young people in schools and youth clubs.
Discrimination of mental health patients could benefit from website
By William Smith
A news item on Pulse Daily brings us new of a great website where you can find the best healthcare providers and where you are encouraged to give anonymous feedback on the care you have received.
iWantGreatCare is a free service for all those looking to find the best care for themselves, their family or those they look after.  The site is free to use and it is easy to search for a doctor or dentist by name, specialty or region of the country.   You can read reviews and rating from other patients to see what they think about the care they have received.  It also reviews Nursing Homes in your area.  You can benefit from the advice and experience of other taking the same medicine as you and also find a pharmacy who can look after your needs.


Online resources
There is plenty of new content to be found on the CREST.BD website, including two multi-media presentations on our research:
Stigma Experiences in the Context of Living with Bipolar Disorder, featuring team member, Melinda Suto, and Quality of Life and Recovery in People with Bipolar Disorder, a video presentation by Erin Michalak given during a Grand Rounds presentation at the Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences.
Our website visitors are able to search all our scientific content by theme, by using the 'tag cloud' located at the top of webpages. You can also find all our videos in one convenient place on our Youtube Channel and our presentation slides on Slideshare. Please check back for new presentations and publications in the coming weeks.

New Mental Health Anti-Stigma Training for Health Care Professionals

Guelph, ON, March 5, 2012 - In a major initiative aimed at improving health care services to persons with mental illnesses, a new continuing medical education (CME) program is now available to support family physicians and specialists to combat the stigma of mental illness within the profession.

Mood Disorders Society of Canada (MDSC) and project partners and sponsors the Mental Health Commission of Canada, Bell, North Bay Regional Health Centre and AstraZeneca Canada have collaborated with the Canadian Medical Association, the Canadian Psychiatric Association and Memorial University to develop the web-based course on understanding and combating the stigma of mental illness. This program uses contact-based education, whereby a person who has experienced mental illness shares his or her personal story with others to help increase physicians' understanding of their needs. It also includes tools and resources to allow for the provision of physician services free from stigma.

People who suffer from mental illness typically have the extra burden of living with the stigma associated with the illness. Stigmatizing behaviours or attitudes are present among friends, family members, co-workers and health care providers. Research has shown that stigma is the single most significant factor in preventing Canadians with mental illnesses from seeking help and that the most important group to which the anti-stigma message needs to be addressed is health care providers.

The culmination of years of research, this innovative approach leverages the knowledge of a wide range of stakeholders, including persons with lived experience. The program has been accredited by the College of Family Physicians Canada and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

The MHIP website aims to provide Australians experiencing mental illness with information on their rights and responsiblities as they make insurance applications and claims. Mental health professionals are encouraged to refer people to this website. To find out more, visit www.mentalhealthandinsurance.org.au
Discussion Paper for the National Recovery-Oriented Mental Health Practice and Service Delivery Framework Project
Discussion Paper NMH Recovery Project
Doors to open on new mental health unit
The first mental health unit to be built in north-west Western Australia is due to open within weeks.
However, there is concern the $9 million facility will not be big enough to cater for the hundreds of people flown to Perth each year for treatment.
Broome resident Pearl Smith suffers from bipolar disorder and is one of about 200 people who flies from the Kimberley to Perth for urgent mental health care.
She says travelling more than 2,000 kilometres to Graylands was traumatic.
"You get used to the place but I think it's a good idea they're building a psych ward in the Kimberley," she said.
However, Cecilia Dann, who runs the local mental health support group, says the 14 beds are not enough.
"It's not really large enough because it's a big area we're actually covering," she said.
The unit will accept patients from across the Pilbara and Kimberley.

Beiträge aus dem Bipolar-Forum
Erfahrungsbericht einer Forumsteilnehmerin
Eine Teilnehmerin berichtet, wie sie zum Bipolar-Forum der DGBS gekommen ist und wie sie selbst und auch andere davon profitieren können Weiterlesen


Scientists in Scotland using brain cells to investigate mental health treatments
Boffins at Edinburgh University hope to gain a better understanding of how mental illnesses work by growing brain cells from people in families which have a history of mental problems.
It is hoped that this study will help to find new treatments. here

bpmag logo

 Employee with bipolar wins discrimination case

March 30, 2012-According to JDSupra.com, an online clearinghouse for legal information, a Washington federal court recently ruled in favor of an employee who alleged he was fired from his job as a store manager because of his bipolar disorder.  

The evidence showed that the employer denied the plaintiff's request for a short medical leave to adjust to new medication and fired him just days after his need for sick leave first arose. The judge awarded the plaintiff $6,500 in back wages and $50,000 for emotional pain and suffering, as well as $258,018.94 for attorney fees and costs.

Attorney Nick Birkenhauer wrote that this is the first case concerning bipolar taken to trial under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  "The case serves as an important reminder to employers that coverage under the ADA includes relatively common mental health conditions," Birkenhauer wrote.
Body clocks may hold key for new bipolar treatment

March 13, 2012, Manchester, England-Scientists have gained insight into why lithium salts are effective at treating bipolar disorder, which could lead to more targeted therapies with fewer side effects.

The extreme 'mood swings' in bipolar disorder have been strongly associated with disruptions in circadian rhythms-the 24-hourly rhythms controlled by our body clocks that govern our day and night activity. Researchers at the University of Manchester have discovered that lithium, which is a standard treatment for bipolar, increased the strength of the body clock's rhythms.
The key action appears to be blocking an enzyme called glycogen synthase kinase, or GSK3. The researchers said the next step is refining drugs that zero in on GSK3.
Stand by your manic depressive
By bp Columnist Bruce Goldstein

Today, I was sharing a big chocolate chip cookie with my wife and daughter at City Bakery. We were enjoying a family day. Suddenly I looked at Brooke and gave her a hug. "Thank you," I said. She looked at me and said, "For what?" "For believing in me," I said. "For sticking it out."

Seven years ago I met a girl online. Blonde. Green eyes. We went out and had a great time. I told her I wrote a book that was soon to be published about how my black Labrador Retriever, Ozzy, saved my life. She asked me if she could take a sneak preview of the manuscript over the weekend. I said there was some very personal stuff in the book, and jokingly added, if you're still interested in hanging out with me, call me Monday. Well, Monday came, and Brooke eventually moved in with me and Ozzy. ... the rest here
Is self-care selfish?
By bp Columnist Beth Brownsberger Mader

Learning to manage much of my own recovery has come from working with peers who have had success coping with bipolar, and those who still struggle. Right now, I am working with a number of folks who find it challenging to appreciate the difference between "selfishness" and "self-care."

It can be difficult to discern the two terms. In my mind, "selfishness" is acting in my own self-interest, believing that I am entitled to behaving a certain way-and who cares about others? "Self-care" is recognizing my self-worth enough to take care of my personal needs while considering and respecting the needs of those around me. Writing this column is cathartic; I can "clean the cupboards," find out a little more about myself, track my illness and recovery, and sympathize with others. I consider it an exercise in self-care. But, it's surprising how quickly this particular exercise in self-care recently turned into an act of selfishness. ... the rest here
                                                         BOOK CORNER

Raccoons Respect My Piss But Watch Out For Skunks: My Funny Life on a Planet Not of My Choosing That I Now - Maybe, Sort of, Not Really, Well Okay - Call Home by John McManamy  raccoons

When you're both depressed and crazy, life has a way of becoming hilarious. In his new book, highly regarded mental health author and advocate John McManamy displays his wickedly dark and equally exuberant funny side.
RACCOONS RESPECT MY PISS BUT WATCH OUT FOR SKUNKS recounts the author's comically absurd misadventures in dealing with life on a planet seemingly built for other people. Childhood, relationships, nature's furry psychopaths, falling in love, neurons, God, UFOs, Hannibal's elephants - it's all there. Each chapter tells a story, the stories bind into a narrative. The narrative builds into profound realizations. 
And you are laughing all the way.  
John McManamy's deep humanity and ability to connect to others is unmistakable. RACCOONS is a timeless story, one to which we can all relate, of one individual's long and painful and ultimately heartening journey to find home. 
Whether contending with mental illness or contending with normal, RACCOONS validates your worth as a human being, a band of light, a soul with neurons. Let the healing begin.

"Perfect Chaos" - It Can Happen to Anyone
by Cinda & Linnea Johnson

perfect chaosIn "Perfect Chaos", mother and young adult daughter Cinda and Linea Johnson have teamed up to write a memoir about Linea's journey to survive bipolar disorder, and Cinda's struggle to save Linea from herself.


Grace for the Afflicted: A Clinical and Biblical Perspective on Mental Illness        grace

Stanford, author of Grace for the Afflicted, is a psychology professor at Baylor, with his doctorate in neuroscience and an invested researcher. Each day men and women diagnosed with mental disorders are told they need to pray more and turn from their sin. Mental illness is equated with demonic possession, weak faith and generational sin. Why is it that the church has struggled in ministering to those with mental illnesses? As both a church leader and professor of psychology and neuroscience, Dr. Stanford has seen far too many mentally ill brothers and sisters damaged by well meaning believers who respond to them out of fear or misinformation rather than grace.


Grace for the Afflicted is written to educate Christians about mental illness from both biblical and scientific perspectives. Dr. Stanford presents insights into our physical and spiritual nature and discusses the appropriate role of psychology and psychiatry in the life of the believer. Describing common mental disorders, Dr. Stanford asks of each: "What does science say and what does the Bible say about this illness?"

Darkness is my Only Companion: A Christian Response to Mental Illness   
Where is God in the suffering of a mentally ill person? What happens to the soul when the mind is ill? How are Christians to respond in the face of mental illness? In Darkness Is My Only Companion, Kathryn Greene-McCreight confronts these difficult questions raised by her own mental illness--bi-polar disorder.


With brutal honesty, she tackles often avoided topics such as suicide, mental hospitals, and shock therapy. Greene-McCreight offers the reader everything from poignant and raw glimpses into the mind of a mentally ill person to practical and forthright advice for their friends, family, and clergy. Her voice is a comfort to those who suffer from mental illness and an invaluable resource for those who love and support them.

2010 Mental Health Humor Cartoon E-Book
sign up for a free copy here
mental book

Caring for the Soul (R'fuat HaNefesh): A Mental Health Resource and Study Guide
 caring for the soul  
Caring for the Soul edited by Rabbi Richard Address, is a mental health resource and study guide that was specifically created in response to the need to raise awareness of and reduce the stigma within congregations and break down the barriers of shame and fear that often are associated with mental health issues in our congregations. It includes a selection of relevant sacred texts, traditional and modern readings for use in services and support groups, sample sermons, services and programs, background information on mental illnesses, related Reform response and UAHC resolutions, and other resources for congregations and individuals.

Frank New Memoir Real Time with Miss Bipolar Bitch  
Published by Outskirts Press      real time


Wonda Lee Davis was one of those who the world labeled a "bipolar b*tch," but her brave self-help memoir shows how she was able to overcome hatred from others and from herself and keep bipolar disorder from standing in the way of living her life.

somewhereSomewhere Over the Rainbow, I've Lost My Damn Mind: A Manic's Mood Chart by Derek Thompson
Except for being personally diagnosed, every aspect of my life is touched by people with bipolar disorder. From friends, to family, to my students, it seems like this disorder is more common than most people would think. Many years ago, before it was well known, a close friend's mother was diagnosed with it. Her symptoms were severe. When my friend's sister and nine-year-old son also received the diagnosis, I tried to learn as much as I could about it from her. One thing that always stayed with me was that she said, "Imagine that the rest of the world is crazy and you are the only normal one."

Imagine: How Creativity Works imagine
Andreasen found that 80 percent of the writers met the formal diagnostic criteria for some type of depression. These successful artists weren't crazy- they were just exceedingly sad. 
"Successful writers are like prizefighters who keep on getting hit but won't go down," Andreasen says. "They'll stick with it until it's right. And that seems to be what the mood disorders help with." While Andreasen acknowledges the terrible burden of mental illness- she quotes Robert Lowell on depression not being a "gift of the Muse" and describes his reliance on lithium to escape the pain- she argues that, at least in its milder forms, the disorder benefits many artists due to the perseverance it makes possible. "Unfortunately, this type of thinking is often inseparable from the suffering," Andreasen says. "If you're at the cutting edge, then you're going to bleed." 
...bipolar disorder, an illness in which people oscillate between intense sadness and extreme euphoria, is so closely associated with creativity. Andreasen found that nearly 40 percent of the successful creative people she investigated had the disorder, a rate that's approximately twenty times higher than it is in the general population. (More recently, the psychiatrist Hagop Akiskal found that nearly two-thirds of a sample of influential European artists were bipolar. ) The reason for this correlation, Andreasen suggests, is that the manic states lead people to erupt with new ideas as their brains combust with remote associations. 



Facilitated Integrated Mood Management for adults with bipolar disorder
Miklowitz DJ  (on our SAB:-) et al. -
Patients with bipolar disorder can be engaged in a short program of facilitated mood management. The effects of Facilitated Integrated Mood Management on the course of bipolar disorder await evaluation in randomized trials. The program may be a useful adjunct to pharmacotherapy in community centers that cannot routinely administer full courses of psychosocial treatment. here
45.9 Million Americans Suffered From Mental Illness Last Year
This means that 20 percent of American adults suffered from a mental illness. That's 1 in 5. This comes from a new report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Report details here
NuPathe Announces Allowance of U.S. Patent Application for NP202
Biodegradable Implant Being Developed to Treat Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder here
Study Says Postural Problems may be a Sign of Bipolar Disorder
Postural control problems may be an important feature of bipolar disorder. This feature can provide insight into regions of the brain affected by the disorder and may pave for potential targets for treatment, suggests study by motor control and psychology researchers at Indiana University.here
Opioid abuse linked by researchers to mood and anxiety disorders

Individuals suffering from mood and anxiety disorders such as bipolar, panic and major depressive disorders may be more likely to abuse opioids, according to a new study led by researchers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, who found that such disorders are highly associated with nonmedical prescription opioid use. The results are featured in a recent issue of the Journal of Psychological Medicine. here
DSM-5 Criticized for Financial Conflicts of Interest
Controversy continues to swell around the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, better known as DSM-5. A new study suggests the 900-page bible of mental health, scheduled for publication in May 2013, is ripe with financial conflicts of interest. here
Project to Explore Human Perception

The Allen Institute for Brain Science announced Wednesday that Microsoft Corp. co-founder Paul G. Allen had donated $300 million to launch an effort to map the brain's basic circuitry of perception.
WSJ science reporter Lee Hotz has details of a $300 million gift from Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen to the Allen Institute for Brain Science to map the brain's basic circuitry of perception. AP Photo/Elaine Thompson
Doubling its staff of scientists and technicians to more than 350 people, the Seattle-based nonprofit group plans to build over the coming decade a series of "brain observatories," computational tools to map neural behavior. The aim is to systematically explore the roots of vision and decision-making by analyzing the billions of cells and synapses in the brain's cerebral cortex, which plays a critical role in vision, memory and awareness.
Impulsive Behavior Regulated By Cannabinoid 2 Receptors
A new study lead by the Neuroscience Institute of Alicante reveals how
manipulating the endocannabinoid system can modulate high levels of impulsivity.
This is the main problem in psychiatric illnesses such a schizophrenia, bipolar
disorder and substance abuse. here
Circadian Rhythm May Hold Key For Treatment Of Bipolar Disorder
Scientists have gained insight into why lithium salts are effective at treating
bipolar disorder in what could lead to more targeted therapies with fewer
side-effects.Bipolar disorder is characterised by alternating states of elevated
mood, or mania, and depression. here
2nd Generation Anti-Psychotic Drugs Publication Bias
According to a study published in PLoS Medicine, trials of second-generation
anti-psychotic drugs, i.e. newer forms of medications for the treatment of  
psychotic illnesses like schizophrenia, that have been published in medical
journals, may embellish their apparent clinical effectiveness. here
Pollen-specific immunoglobulin E positivity is associated with worsening of depression scores in bipolar disorder patients during high pollen season
To the authors' knowledge, this is the first report of coupling a molecular marker of vulnerability with a specific environmental trigger leading to exacerbation of depression in patients with bipolar I disorder. here
Deficits in tasks of executive functioning that mimic real-life scenarios in bipolar disorder
The data suggest that the inclusion of ecological tests in the assessment of Bipolar Disorder patients can contribute to providing a more realistic cognitive profile of this patient population, which will undoubtedly allow for a better design of therapeutic and rehabilitation strategies that can help patients to minimize impact in real-life settings. here
Cognition in older adults with bipolar disorder versus major depressive disorder
Bipolar Disorders
In older age, patients with Bipolar disorder (BD) have worse overall cognitive function than patients with major depressive disorder (MDD). The findings suggest that factors intrinsic to BD appear to be related to cognitive deterioration and support the understanding that BD is associated with cognitive decline. here
Grey matter differences in bipolar disorder: a meta-analysis of voxel-based morphometry studies
Selvaraj S et al. Bipolar disorder is consistently associated with reductions in right prefrontal and temporal lobe grey matter. Reductions elsewhere may be obscured by clinical and methodological heterogeneity.

Early determinants of four-year clinical outcomes in bipolar disorder with psychosis
The four-year outcomes of a first-admission cohort with bipolar I disorder with psychosis were generally favorable. Poorer premorbid functioning, Schneiderian delusions, greater depressive symptoms, and a younger age of first hospitalization portend a worse course. here
Cognitive impairment in late life schizophrenia and bipolar I disorder
In both older patients with schizophrenia and with bipolar disorder, serious and pervasive cognitive deficits can be demonstrated. Trait-related cognitive deficits in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder may share major phenotypic similarity in later life. here
The Role of Beliefs About Mood Swings in Determining Outcome in Bipolar Disorder
Beliefs about mood swings had important effects on weekly fluctuations in depression severity and time to relapse.
Neurocognitive functioning in early-onset and late-onset older patients with euthymic bipolar disorder
Patients with late-onset bipolar disorder (LO-BD) may have more extensive and severe cognitive impairments, as well as higher vulnerability to extrapyramidal symptoms, compared with patients with early-onset BD (EO-BD). Cognitive-motor disturbances may help to explain impairments in daily functioning among older patients with EO-BD and LO-BD during remission. here
 A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial of acamprosate in alcohol-dependent individuals with bipolar disorder: a preliminary report
Acamprosate was well-tolerated, with no worsening of depressive or manic symptoms, and appeared to confer some clinical benefit in study completers in the last two weeks of the trial. Larger studies of longer duration are required to fully explore the utility of acamprosate in this population. here
Rapid acute treatment of agitation in patients with bipolar I disorder: a multicenter, randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial with inhaled loxapine
Inhaled loxapine provided a rapid, non-injection, well-tolerated acute treatment for agitation in patients with bipolar I disorder. here
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) in bipolar disorder: A narrative review of literature
While such practice appears to be largely safe, one should be mindful about dose of lithium and possible interference of antiepileptic drugs with efficacy of ECT. The use of suprathreshold bilateral ECT and bifrontal placement of electrodes may confer some advantage over other methods. here

patrick kennedy 


In celebration of Mental Health Awareness Month you are invited to attend The Public Forum  on May 22 from 3:30 - 5:30 in Del Mar, CA, USA 

If you are interested in attending; please contact areitzin@internationalbipolarfoundation.org   

Sponsored by 


Patrick Kennedy's new frontier: Healing the brain  


Mental health screening app benefits from CMS payment decisionapp  

A recent decision by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to start covering preventive screening for depression and alcohol abuse is paving the way for wider use of a mobile app that helps primary care physicians find signs of mental illness that might otherwise be missed.


As part of healthcare reform efforts, CMS said in October that it would pay for annual screenings for both conditions. The news followed by just a few months the release of a $2.99 iPhone app called mym3, a screening tool that walks clinicians and consumers through a 27-item questionnaire in about three minutes to look for not only depression but also anxiety, bipolar disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.  here


 Hypersomnia - what it is

Mirtazapine Antidepressant Information

Bipolar Patients, Family Members and Friends: 10 Things Not to Do
In Celebration of Volunteer Appreciation Month
we applaud our volunteers for all the
hard work, time and commitment they give to us.

Volunteer Appreciation Tea will take place on Tuesday, April 17 from 1:00 - 3:00 in San Diego, CA

Muffy Walker; co-founder & President was recently given the
Salvation Army Woman of Dedication Award

is a TWIN Honoree; a special woman who has made significant contributions in the San Diego community


                        Introducing Depression Recovery Groups 


In the last several years, depression sufferers have flocked to the internet to look for information and encouragement to deal with the life-crippling effects of major depressive disorder and bipolar disorder. In the past, internet-based depression support was mainly provided via chat rooms and forums. Each has major limitations. Chat rooms even when "facilitated" can be rather chaotic and forums can be slow and uneven in responding to a specific participant's needs.

Depression Recovery Groups offers webconference-based peer support and helpful education meetings that are much more like being in a real group. In DRG meetings participants can see their group leader and they can talk with each other. Participants can join a meeting from the comfort and privacy of their homes and there are groups available every day.

DRG founder, Vincent F. Caimano, an organizational psychologist and successful management consultant, started the web-based peer-to-peer counseling service after recovering from a life-long experience with depression. "I had always done the right thing when I had a bout of depression but I kept relapsing every few years. When I finally got tired of that I became a student of depression treatment. In 2004 I started a group to better help myself and others. I learned that there were many other individuals like me who needed something more than conventional treatment to get well. It inspired me to find a way to encourage and inform others on a much larger scale. DRG is the result of the passion I have developed to do something about this insidious problem."


For further information about DRG's depression support services visit their website: www.depressionrecoverygroups.com.





club logo 

XciteSteps offers three great San Diego Summer Camp options for kids and teens who experience cognitive disabilities such as autism, aspergers, pdd-nos, MDD, CDD or any other special needs. What makes XciteSteps unique is their personalized approach making sure each camper not only has fun, but is improving upon their social or behavioral goals, too. Program Managers will personally meet the parents and the child or teen to set up an achievement plan and ease the transition for the camper.  Our camp also welcomes ABA clients, offering a fantastic opportunity to work on social goals that are more difficult to introduce in the home setting, and also generalizing skills and behaviors in different environments.  All camps offer a 3 to 1 ratio to ensure each camper gets personalized attention and has a successful camp experience.  ABA clients have a 1 to 1 ratio.

This year, there are some changes to the operation of our Summer Camp to give it more defined structure.  With achievement plans for each camper, the mentor can work with them to acheive their individual goals and target their unique challenges.  The progress will be tracked and sent to the parents at the end of each week.  The inclusion of ABA campers allows all campers to benefit from being exposed to the consitstancy and structure of ABA therapy, and also results in more mentors and interventionists present to engage with the campers.  These changes will ensure that every camper will get even more out of their time, all while making friends and having fun in the summer sun!
At home pick up and drop off available.  Scholarships are available by application

Teen Jr Counselor Training Camp

Teens ages 15+ have the opportunity to gain confidence in leadership skills and job experience through our Jr Counselor Camps.  Being a Junior Counselor teaches responsibility, being a positive role model, punctuality, listening skills, multi-tasking skills, following directions and working with others. Junior Counselors will be given responsibilities including assisting in watching over and interacting with the kids, being a good role model and following through on tasks. Each junior counselor will will go through an interview and job training process in a fun environment with a job coach. They even get a paycheck at the end of the week!


Dear Friend & Advocate

How can you use IDEA 2004 to advocate for an appropriate program for your child? Make sure you know your legal rights and responsibilities in the law.

IDEA places schools under increased pressure to use educational programs that work, programs that have a track record of success. IDEA 2004 created a higher standard for a free, appropriate public education.
Parents can also use NCLB to obtain a better IEP for their children.

In this issue of the Special Ed Advocate, you will learn how to ensure that IEP goals are specific, comprehensive, and measurable. Learn how to successfully negotiate for services that provide true educational benefit. Find out what pitfalls to avoid and how to resolve disputes.
You are an equal IEP team participant, your input holds equal weight with other information presented and considered.

You have an IEP meeting scheduled. You are thinking about your child's plan for the next twelve months. Now what?

Do you know how to prepare for and document IEP meetings carefully? Need some tips?

In this issue of the Special Ed Advocate, you will find out how to prepare for the meeting, log contacts and discussion with the school, & document what happens during the IEP process. Learn where to find help when you need it.
School psychologists often refuse to provide copies of tests to parents, telling them it is not possible to do so because of copyright laws.

School administrators bar parents from observing their child's classroom because of confidentiality issues.

In this issue of the Special Ed Advocate, you will find answers to questions about FERPA, student privacy and confidentiality, and limits on student rights to confidentiality. You'll also learn about parental rights to observe your child's classroom.

Psych Central 

Antipsychotic use during pregnancy linked to motor delay

Electroacupuncture may relieve depression

New drug treatments sorely needed

Lithium impacts bipolar disorder by strengthening body clock


                           our newest blogger Chato Stewart 

Chato Stewart is a husband, father and mental health advocate. He is an artist and the cartoonist behind the Mental Health Humor cartoons. He creates positive, provoking, and sometimes even funny cartoons! The cartoons are drawn from his personal experience of living with Bipolar Disorder. Mr. Chato Stewart strongly believes that there is power behind humor. His motto is humor gives help, hope and healing. His goal and mission is to tap into humor and use it as a positive tool to cope with the serious and debilitating effects of mental illness. 


Chato started blogging in 2008 as part of his Mental Health Humor Project. His cartoons have been used by many in the mental health community. Currently he is blogging on Psych Central Network and BP Hope Magazine offering his Words of The Wisdomless.  


Chato B. Stewart is a Florida board Certified Recovery Peer Specialist - A (CRPS-A) andNAMI member. Chato is also the 1st place winner of the DBSA 2009 Facing Us Video Contest. In his powerful public service announcement, he tells his personal story of living with a mental illness through a montage of his cartoons. Adding to his little list of accomplishments is being part of the 2010 DBSA Stand-Up for Mental Health comedy night and being invited back for the 2011 Conference to be a Stand-Up comic in the show.. 


All Chato's Websites and blogs are family cartoons with a G and PG rating: Get Your FREE e-book of my 2010 Cartoons:






 mental health ministries

Congregational Resource Guide: Mental Health Ministry Resources

Carole Wills, M.A.R. challenges faith communities to move beyond the silence, ignorance, and prejudice that so often characterize congregational members in their relations with persons who suffer from mental illness. She has developed an extensive and fully annotated list of more than one hundred mental health ministry resources. A shorter list of ten most highly recommended resources for individual, small or large group use is also offered. Both lists include printed and audio-visual resources for faith communities, clergy and lay pastoral caregivers and the general public. In addition, links to mental health -related organizations are provided. The mental health ministry resources pages can be accessed at www.congregationalresources.org/mental-health-ministry-resources and the PDF file is available on the Mental Health Ministries website in the Faith Group Resources section under Models of Ministry.

The CRG (Congregational Resource Guide) is a project of the Alban Institute, and fully funded by Lilly Endowment Inc. as a free gift to America's Congregations. Their web site provides resources on every topic necessary for building "healthy bodies of worship and equipping them to become agents of transformation in the communities they exist." www.congregationalresources.org.


  It contains a lot of helpful free information for parents, including cutting edge special education topics in the form of articles and videos.

Some of the articles and videos on the website include such topics as: 

Inclusion Confusion: LRE & The Removal of the Special Day Cl

The IEP, IEE and the Provision of FAPE
School Discipline: How to Protect Your Special Needs Child
Which Does Your Child Need? Comparing the IEP with the 504 Plan
The IEE- Leveling the Playing Field
Parental Participation in the IEP: The Parent's Important Role 

"Free IEP Evaluation Day" in April, where parents can reserve a one-hour time slot to ask questions about their child's IEP.  The event will be held on Saturday, April 28, 2012 between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.  This event is free and will be held in the Rancho Bernardo area of San Diego.
Registration is required due to space limitations.


Richard Dreyfuss talks about living with bipolar disorder
By Barbara Peters Smith, Herald-Tribune / Tuesday, April 3, 2012  dreyfus
Academy Award-winning actor Richard Dreyfuss (Jaws, The Goodbye Girl, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Mr. Holland's Opus) was in Sarasota Saturday to speak on "Living With Mental Illness" for the Mental Health Community Centers. The event was sponsored by the Sarasota Memorial Healthcare Foundation and underwritten by The Isermann Family Foundation. Dreyfuss, who has bipolar disorder, sat down with Health+Fitness editor Barbara Peters Smith to describe what the world looks like through the prism of this disease.  here




NAMI WALK: The walk is scheduled for April 21, 2012 

SAMHSA, MacArthur collaborate to improve how juvenile justice system responds to the behavioral health needs of youth 
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation are collaborating on a $1 million effort targeting the behavioral health needs of youth in contact with the juvenile justice system.  The project is aimed at diverting youth with behavioral health conditions from the juvenile justice system to community-based programs and services.

Nominate for the Voice Awards  voice awards

Evaluation of the Protection and Advocacy for Individuals With Mental Illness (PAIMI) Program summarizes a program evaluation of a Federally-funded state-based system to protect patient rights for those with significant mental health disability. Reviews the program goals, presents significant findings, and discusses their impact on outcomes for patients. Inventory#: PEP12-EVALPAIMI  Evaluation of the Protection and Advocacy for Individuals With Mental Illness (PAIMI) Program 




Retreat for Moms of Kids with Special Needs 14 April 9:30am - 6:30pm at no cost to you, the participant.  Freeheart Ranch in University Heights, CA.  Sarah Wyckoff, MA  Sarah@FreeheartRanch.com  619-246-4595
Saturday, April 14th, 2012 Doors open at 6:30 PM, Music at 7:30 PM
Northside Tavern  1058 Howell Mill Rd NW, Atlanta, GA
Balanced Mind Luncheon

Chicago, April 19 -- Meet other local parents facing the special challenges of raising a child with a mood disorder, as our two speakers share their insights and expertise
The role of peer workers in mental health services Conference, 
26 April in London. This event, jointly organised with NHS Confederation Mental Health Network, offers delegates the opportunity to find out how peer support can be key to implementing recovery focused practice. Gene Johnson, founder of Recovery Innovations (previously META services) in Arizona, will be giving the plenary address. To avoid disappointment book tickets online here: http://bit.ly/xVBqPN 

5th Annual San Diego Survivors of Suicide Loss Day


Panel of survivors and professionals Followed by questions and answers

Saturday, April 28th 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Vista Grande Community Church

10881 Tierrasanta Blvd. San Diego 92124  

For more information: Call 619-482-0297 or Email info@soslsd.org  


Reaching Those Resistant to Mental Health Treatment

May 2nd or 3rd , 2012, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.  

San Diego Health Services Complex-Coronado Room, 3851 Rosecrans, San Diego 92110


Dr. Xavier Amador, PhD, author of I Am Not Sick, I Don't Need Help,

will be presenting one day training seminars on reaching those that are resistant to mental health treatment. Dr. Amador is founder of the LEAP Training Institute:


Family members, caretakers and service providers are encouraged to attend    

For more information please contact Betsy Mueller at 619-683-3100

Speak Up for Kids May 6-12, 2012
Make it your new year's resolution to Speak Up for Kids! We are excited to spread the word about the signs and symptoms of psychiatric and learning disorders in children and teens with our 2nd annual Speak Up for Kids public education campaign during National Children's Mental Health Awareness Week (May 6-12, 2012). here
ViewPoints Lecture May 9, 2012
Your Healthy Brain - a panel discussion with Dr. Tom Flanagan, Dr. Dee Silver & Muffy Walker
Rancho Santa Fe Village Presbyterian Church, RSF, CA
OneMind UCLA Conference
May 23-25, 2012
Jewish Family Services San Diego presents:
Unmeasured Strength with Lauren Manning 
Thursday, May 24. Hyatt Regency, La Jolla, CA
5th National Conference on Behavioral Health for Women & Girls 
Health, Empowerment, Resilience & Recovery
July 17-19, 2012 San Diego Marriott
Schizophrenia & Related Disorders Alliance of America (SRDAA) Conference 
May 12 Detroit
September 29 Houston
contact linda.stalters@srdaa.org

NAMI FaithNet will be offering workshops at NAMI national convention in Seattle, WA, Wednesday, June 27-Saturday, June 30, 2012.  The theme is Think Learn Live: Wellness, Resiliency and Recovery.  There will be workshops available from NAMI FaithNet.   For registration details, go to: http://www.nami.org/template.cfm?section=convention
Staglin Music Festival for Mental Health
September 15,2012



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 promote care and support services; and to erase associated stigma through public education.
Visit us online for more information: www.internationalbipolarfoundation.org
11622 El Camino Real, Suite 100  San Diego, CA 92130
p: (858) 764-2496  f: (858) 764-2491
8895 Towne Centre Drive, Suite 105-360  San Diego, CA 92122
We have a new Community Page on FaceBook.

Please join us on Facebook and "Like" us and help us spread the word.
Find us on Facebook

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.