About four percent of people in the United States are Misdiagnosed Bipolar Disorder at some point in their lives, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In recent years, however, some researchers have called some of those diagnoses into question, while others have maintained that the number of people with bipolar disorder is actually greater.In 2008, the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry published a study that suggested bipolar disorder is often diagnosed in people who don’t actually have the condition.But far more people had been given the bipolar label by mistake, he says. Dr. Zimmerman believes part of the reason for this overdiagnosis trend is aggressive marketing to doctors by companies that produce the drugs used to treat bipolar disorder.
“When a pharmaceutical company repeatedly says, ‘Don’t miss bipolar disorder, don’t miss bipolar disorder, and when you diagnose it, here are some medications you can use to treat it,’ there’s a tendency to expand the concept,” Zimmerman says. He says he’s replicated the 2008 findings of overdiagnosis in a more recent study that has not yet been published.In addition, Zimmerman says, bipolar disorder shares some symptoms with borderline personality disorder, a condition marked by impulsive behavior and problems relating to other people — and because of this, people who have borderline personality disorder are often Misdiagnosed Bipolar. Indeed, a review published in The Scientific World Journal in 2013 pointed to borderline personality disorder as a factor in the Misdiagnosed Bipolar Disorder