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Article   |    
Family Planning for Women With Bipolar Disorder
Samuel Packer
Psychiatric Services 1992; doi:
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University of Toronto; Wellesley Hospital, 160 Wellesley Street East, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4Y 1J3

1992 by the American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

Women with bipolar disorder often ask their treating clinician for information about family planning, as they are concerned about the impact of their illness on offspring. Three areas that should be included in discussions with patients and their partners are heritability of the disorder, risks during pregnancy, and risks during the postpartum Period. The author summarizes information about genetic transmission of bipolar disorder, effects on bipolar patients of stress associated with pregnancy and childrearing, and effects of medication on the fetus and newborn. Discussion of these issues is most relevant for a woman patient who is planning a pregnancy, but may also be useful for couples before marriage, for a woman patient who finds that she is pregnant, and for men with bipolar disorder who want to become fathers.

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