Aim. The article presents current concepts on the role of temperament in bipolar affective disorder:
Review. Results of recent studies confirm accuracy of the observation made by Emil Kraepelin, the author of the concept of manic-depressive illness, that temperament - understood as an inborn, mostly biologically determined behavior style based on the function of the central nervous system-may be a significant predictor of affective disorders. Current research on temperament is focused on four issues – the role of temperament as a factor predisposing to bipolar disorder; the importance of temperamental traits for problem behaviours in adolescence preceding the onset of bipolar disorder; the significance of temperament as an indicator of the so-called bipolar spectrum disorders and finally the effect of temperament on the clinical picture of affective disorders.
Conclusions. Research on temperament may contribute to our better understanding of the etiology and nosological associations of bipolar disorder, as well as to improve clinical management of the condition.