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Social stress response in adolescents with bipolar disorder

Casement, Melynda D ; Goldstein, Tina R ; Gratzmiller, Sarah M ; Franzen, Peter L

Psychoneuroendocrinology, May 2018, Vol.91, pp.159-168 [Peer Reviewed Journal]

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  • Title:
    Social stress response in adolescents with bipolar disorder
  • Author/Creator: Casement, Melynda D ; Goldstein, Tina R ; Gratzmiller, Sarah M ; Franzen, Peter L
  • Language: English
  • Subjects: Bipolar ; Adolescence ; Stress ; Psychophysiology ; Heart Rate Variability ; Medicine ; Anatomy & Physiology
  • Is Part Of: Psychoneuroendocrinology, May 2018, Vol.91, pp.159-168
  • Description: Theoretical models posit that stressors contribute to the onset and maintenance of bipolar disorder in adolescence through disruptions in stress physiology, but physiological response to stressors has not been evaluated in adolescents with bipolar illness. The present study tests the hypothesis that adolescents with bipolar disorder will have greater reactivity to a laboratory social stress task than healthy adolescents. Adolescents with bipolar illness (  = 27) and healthy adolescents (  = 28) completed a modified version of the Trier Social Stress Task. Stress response was assessed using high frequency heart rate variability (HF-HRV), heart rate (HR), mean arterial blood pressure (MAP), salivary cortisol, and subjective stress. Multilevel models were used to test for group differences in resting-state physiology, and stress reactivity and recovery. Adolescents with bipolar disorder had greater reactivity in HF-HRV (  = 3.32), but blunted reactivity in MAP (  = −3.08) and cortisol (  = −2.60), during the stressor compared to healthy adolescents. They also had lower resting HF-HRV (  = −3.49) and cortisol (  = −2.86), and higher resting HR (  = 3.56), than healthy adolescents. These results indicate that bipolar disorder is associated with disruptions in autonomic and endocrine response to stress during adolescence, including greater HF-HRV reactivity. Further research should evaluate whether these individual differences in stress physiology precede and predict the onset of mood episodes.
  • Identifier: ISSN: 0306-4530 ; E-ISSN: 1873-3360 ; DOI: 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2018.02.017