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Walden, Jörg; Normann, C.; Langosch, J.; Berger, M.; Grunze, Heinz (1998): Differential treatment of bipolar disorder with old and new antiepileptic drugs. In: Neuropsychobiology, No. 3: pp. 181-184




Although lithium remains the preferred medication for bipolar disorders, new investigations suggest that only 60 to 80% of patients have a good response with a classical presentation. The antiepileptics carbamazepine and valproate are important alternatives. Several studies have shown that lithium, carbamazepine and valproate are effective in pure mania. Mixed mania and rapid cycling respond, however, well to valproate. One disadvantage of carbamazepine is its enzyme inducing property with the consequence of a decrease of plasma levels of other psychotropic medications and a worsening of psychopathology. First data indicate a good antimanic and antidepressive efficacy of the new antiepileptic drug lamotrigine.