“Adolescent Bipolar Disorder After Head Injury” Case Study Example

A case study is a process of research on a particular development or situations that require detailed assessment over time. A phenomenon is examined to understand it in the real life setting when it is not readily understood. Data is gathered, evaluated, analyzed, and is presented in a form of a report. Through a focused research on bipolar disorder, one can get a contextual overview of the conditions of the disease. Bipolar disorder after a head injury, among others, requires a follow-up study of the failures in one’s perceptions and behaviors: such information may serve to identify the severity of the psychiatric condition.

The most common form of the psychotic mental disorder is schizophrenia which is considered to be a genetic disease. However, injury to the head or brain is a primary cause of psychosis. Psychosis can be even fatal if the head injury is severe as it may cause hallucinations or render one delirious. Case studies of bipolar head injuries require detailed and regular checkups to adequately examine the clinical characteristics and mental health treatment options.

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) may cause neuropsychiatric disturbances which can be mild or fatal. One can be emotionally and intellectually vulnerable over a period of more than a decade. Case studies of bipolar head injuries among teenagers highlight some of the major problems which include personality changes, such as intellectual changes; conditions when the patient does not pay attention to the surrounding; lack of concentration; impaired memory, sleep disorders, anxiety and irritability amongst other problems. Traumatic brain injury is mostly associated with the head injuries that may cause diffused or focal brain damage and other secondary effects such as hydrocephalus, infections, increased intracranial pressure, cerebral edema and other conditions.

Bipolar disorder case study examples: a 16-year-old boy – who was left handed – was involved in a road traffic accident. He had a traumatic brain injury after which he was hospitalized and was in a coma for five days. Doctors carried out subdural hematoma drainage, and he was medicated with corticoids and phenytoin. Laboratory tests were conducted on the regular basis and included stimulating hormones administered within normal range. When the cranial computed tomography (CT) scan was performed, it showed left temporoparietal craniotomy. There was also hematoma substitution by hypodensity in the left cortical-parietal area of the left region. Months later there was evidence of low concentration, slow information processing, and verbal fluency deficit. A year later he was in dire need of inpatient psychiatric treatment due to behavioral symptoms.

Another typical bipolar disorder case study example is that of a 14-year-old teenager who sustained a head injury and later showed a change in his personality and early onset of schizophrenia psychosis.

Bipolar disorder sample case study

The patient was born full term with normal presentation and delivery without perinatal/obstetric complications. There was no evidence of any family member with a history of the disease. The patient was knocked down off his bicycle where he suffered a left blow on his left frontoparietal region. The surface hematoma was evident, but no fractures were visible from the x-rays. But ten years after the accident, he was never the same again. He experienced bipolar personality disorder to the point that he tried to kill himself by jumping off the bus. Although the disease manifested itself later in his life, bipolar personality disorder case study indicates that the blow he suffered when he was sixteen years might have affected the behavior changes.

Mood stabilizers are used to stabilize bipolar mood disorder in cases of elevated mood conditions which are known as hypomania or mania. Hypomania is mildly severe when individuals appear excited and highly energetic. Hypomania, however, does not affect the ability of the person to socialize and does not require hospitalization. Mania is the elevation of hypomania, and the individual’s behaviors become more erratic, a person experiences less sleep and more rapid speech patterns due to the exorbitant brain activities. This mood disorder is often associated with the high risk of suicide and self-harm conditions while manifesting itself through the symptoms of both hypomania and mania. Bipolar mood disorder in this state can be easily confused with the mood swings which often demonstrate suicidal behaviors. Mood stabilizers and antipsychotics medication are administered to alleviate these conditions. For example, mood stabilizers for bipolar mood disorder are anticonvulsants and lithium. Treatment also includes psychotherapy.

There has been an increase in adolescent bipolar disorder case studies in the recent years. But there still is controversy on the validity on the findings. Amidst these controversies, pediatric bipolar disorder remains a serious illness. However, adolescents with bipolar spectrum show higher risks of suicide, with most of those diagnosed reported previous attempt to commit suicide. They also show the disruptive disorders and depression and mostly irritability and aggression. It is also notable that adolescent bipolar disorder of DSM-IV criteria for BP-NOS adolescents fits the criteria due to their failure to meet the criteria for episode duration. Comorbid diagnosis is present in over 90% of youths with bipolar disorder. Adolescents with comorbid psychiatric diagnosis present a clinical complication.

The onset of adolescent bipolar disorder mostly begins at the ages between 16 and 17, but bipolar disorder onset can occur at earlier ages. Such patients showed a higher prevalence of dysphoric mania and the incidences are prone to last a lifetime.

Adolescent bipolar disorder after a head injury evolves over time, and when they grow older, they experience fewer euthymic periods. The adolescent bipolar disorder is a serious condition and, albeit sufficient evidence collected through case studies, leaves a lot to be done.

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