Background: Past studies have evaluated the association of various comorbidities with bipolar disorder. This study analyzes differences in the prevalence and association of medical and psychiatric comorbidities in bipolar patients by gender. Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted using the Nationwide Inpatient Sample (2010–2014). Using International Classification of Diseases, 9th Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM) codes, we narrowed the study population to comprise those with a primary diagnosis of bipolar disorder and then obtained information about comorbidities. The differences in comorbidities by gender were quantified using chi-square tests and the logistic regression model (odds ratio (OR)). Results: Hypertension (20.5%), asthma (12.5%) and hypothyroidism (8.1%) were the top medical comorbidities found in bipolar patients. Migraine and hypothyroidism were seen three times higher in females (OR = 3.074 and OR = 3.001; respectively). Females with bipolar disorder had higher odds of comorbid inflammatory disorders like asthma (OR = 1.755), Crohn’s disease (OR = 1.197) and multiple sclerosis (OR = 2.440) compared to males. Females had a two-fold higher likelihood of comorbid post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) (OR = 2.253) followed by personality disorders (OR = 1.692) and anxiety disorders (OR = 1.663) compared to males. Conclusion: Women with bipolar disorder have a much higher medical comorbidity burden than men and may highly benefit from an integrated team of physicians to manage their condition and improve their health-related quality of life.
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