Background: Mood instability in bipolar disorder is associated with a risk of relapse. This study investigated differences in mood instability between patients with bipolar disorder type I and type II, which previously has been sparingly investigated.
Methods: Patients with bipolar disorder type I (n = 53) and type II (n = 31) used a daily smartphone-based self-monitoring system for 9 months. Data in the present reflect 15.975 observations of daily collected smartphone-based data on patient-evaluated mood.
Results: In models adjusted for age, gender, illness duration and psychopharmacological treatment, patients with bipolar disorder type II experienced more mood instability during depression compared with patients with bipolar disorder type I (B: 0.27, 95% CI 0.007; 0.53, p = 0.044), but lower intensity of manic symptoms. Patients with bipolar disorder type II did not experience lower mean mood or higher intensity of depressive symptoms compared with patients with bipolar disorder type I.
Conclusions: Compared to bipolar disorder type I, patients with bipolar disorder type II had higher mood instability for depression. Clinically it is of importance to identify these inter-episodic symptoms. Future studies investigating the effect of treatment on mood instability measures are warranted. Trial registration NCT02221336.
Keywords: Bipolar disorder; Depression; Hypomania.