Your Child Does Not Have Bipolar Disorder: How Bad Science and Good Public Relations Created the Diagnosis

Your Child Does Not Have Bipolar Disorder: How Bad Science and Good Public Relations Created the Diagnosis

by Stuart L. Kaplan M.D. (Editor)


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An eminent child psychiatrist provides an insider's, whistle-blowing perspective on the promotion of a diagnostic entity that does not exist.

• Arresting case histories

• A reference section

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780313381348
Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Publication date: 03/30/2011
Series: Childhood in America Series
Pages: 184
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Stuart L. Kaplan, MD, is clinical professor of psychiatry at Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, PA.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction xiii

Part I Critique of Pediatric Bipolar Disorder

1 Adult Bipolar Disorder and the DSM System 3

Adult Bipolar Disorder 4

The DSM System 8

2 Pediatric Bipolar Disorder 15

Pediatric Bipolar Disorder as ADHD and ODD 17

The Development of the Diagnosis of Pediatric Bipolar Disorder 24

Bipolar Disorder in the Very Young 32

One Authoritative View 35

3 Some Studies of the Scientific Basis of Pediatric Bipolar Disorder 39

Genetics 40

Age of Onset: Family Studies 43

Age of Onset: Self-Report 46

Epidemiology 48

Treatment or Prevention? 50

4 Cultural Influences in Pediatric Bipolar Disorder 55

How Culture Helps Shape Mental Illness 56

Pediatric Bipolar Disorder as a Media Event 58

Professional Support for the Diagnosis 64

Psychological Consequences of Misdiagnosis 68

Conclusion 71

5 Child and Adolescent Depression: A Brief Introduction 75

Diagnosing Depression in Children and Adolescents 76

The Diagnosis of Depression in Children and Adolescents and DSM-IV Criteria 77

Suicide 81

Depression and Bipolar Disorder 82

Conclusion 82

6 Did Romeo and Juliet Have Bipolar II Disorder? Bipolar Disorder in Adolescence 83

Romeo and Juliet 83

Aggression and the Misdiagnosis of Bipolar Disorder in an Adolescent 85

Bipolar Disorder in an Adolescent 86

Conclusion 88

Part II Medications and Pediatric Bipolar Disorder

7 Three Medications for Pediatric Bipolar Disorder 93

Lithium 94

Valproate 97

Risperidone 99

Conclusion 103

8 Clinical Trials 109

A Change in Clinical Child Psychiatry 110

Introduction to Clinical Trials 112

Multisite Clinical Trials 113

Example of a Clinical Trial 115

Conclusion 120

9 Bad Science 121

The Importance of Falsification 122

Diagnostic Errors 123

Mixing Apples and Oranges 126

Chicken or Egg? 126

Conclusion 127

10 Stimulant Medications 129

Ethical Considerations 130

Increase of Use in Stimulant Medication 132

The MTA Study 134

Stimulant Risks 139

Conclusion 146

Part III Advice for Parents

11 Medication Advice for Parents 153

Stimulant Medications 153

Antipsychotic Medications 155

12 A Family-Based Behavior Modification Program for Oppositional Children 157

Reinforcing Bad Behavior 158

The Behavior Modification Program: An Overview 160

Stage I Rewards List 162

Stage II Misbehavior List 164

Stage III Baseline Data 165

Stage IV Implementation 166

Family Therapy Considerations 169

For Parents Only 172

Afterword Sharna Olfman 173

Index 175

What People are Saying About This

Elizabeth J. Roberts

"Dr. Kaplan's book carries an extremely important message to parents, one that could change the course of your child's health and well-being. These psychotropic medications which are given so freely to every misbehaving child who has been wrongly labeled bipolar, have serious side effects and consequences, some of which cannot be reversed. Before you jump to the conclusion that your child has bipolar disorder, you owe it to your child to read this book. You could be saving your child's future and maybe his life."

Theodore A. Petti

"At last there is a book that clinicians can refer parents for an alternative view of the 'bipolar child.' Dr. Kaplan has tackled a highly controversial topic area and with his significant experience and familiarity with the relevant research literature has crafted a work that provides parents a guide to better understand the symptoms, classification, and treatment of the child with severe mood dysregulation and problematic, highly labile behavior. The author has not disguised his own views but does provide both sides of the bipolar disorder diagnosis and its treatment in grade-school children. This is done in an easily led, almost chatty manner for parents and those caring for this very difficult pediatric population. The book should be of value to primary care physicians and related health sector and school personnel and parents of these children."

Lee Combrinck-Graham

"With his carefully crafted examination of the lack of a substantial basis for the existence of Bipolar Disorder in prepubescent children, Kaplan throws down the gauntlet to the media, the pharmaceutical companies hawking drugs to 'stabilize moods' and the researchers who have 'invented' this condition. Parents reading this book should be assured that their preadolescent child does not have bipolar disorder, and Kaplan not only describes some of the sources of the worrisome behaviors of aggression, anger, hyperactivity, mood swings, and difficulties negotiating the social and educational demands of childhood, but also strongly endorses effective treatments, including medication, behavioral interventions, and family support."

Susan D. Mayes

"Stuart Kaplan has written a brilliant, scholarly, and long overdue book providing compelling evidence that what is often diagnosed as pediatric bipolar disorder is not true bipolar disorder. In over 30 years of clinical practice, I have seen many children considered to have pediatric bipolar disorder and have yet to meet one whose symptoms are not better explained by combined ADHD and ODD, consistent with Dr. Kaplan's contention. He eloquently interweaves clinical case examples with research evidence producing a convincing argument against pediatric bipolar disorder. His book is an essential guide for clinicians and parents for understanding, diagnosing, and treating what is often mistakenly referred to as pediatric bipolar disorder."

Daniel Safer

"Your Child is Not Bipolar presents in clear prose a very well-informed, solidly argued expose of a current, highly problematic, and misleading psychiatric diagnosis in children. The author is a seasoned clinician, researcher and academic who is passionate about improving diagnostic accuracy in the field."

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