2010 issue 4

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Volume 19, issue 4

Review article

Mental disorders and disturbances in cognitive, social and family functioning in offspring of parents with bipolar disorder – a literature review

Anna Braniecka1, Dorota Bzinkowska2, Iwona Koszewska2
1. Szkoła Wyższa Psychologii Społecznej, Warszawa
2. II Klinika Psychiatryczna, Instytut Psychiatrii i Neurologii, Warszawa
Postępy Psychiatrii i Neurologii 2010; 19(4): 275–281
Keywords: bipolar affective disorder, offspring, mental disorders, cognitive functioning, family functioning, social functioning

Abstract

Objective. The paper presents an overview of 65 articles concerning children of bipolar parents.
Conclusions. Findings from reviewed studies are critically discussed with respect to the prevalence of mental disorders, as well as cognitive, social, and family functioning of bipolar parents' offspring. The findings suggest that these children suffer from mental disorders in childhood more often than do those of healthy parents, but no specific pattern of their disturbances was found. Increased rates of mood and anxiety disorders in this group were also reported. Although findings concerning their cognitive functioning are not univocal, they suggest more frequent deficits among bipolar parents' offspring – especially in attention, memory, language competencies, and executive functions. Their cognitive deficits are similar to those typical of people with bipolar disorders and may be predictive of the incidence of affective disorders in the future.

Address for correspondence:
lek. Anna Braniecka
Szkoła Wyższa Psychologii Społecznej
ul. Chodakowska 19/31, 03-815 Warszawa