Current Psychiatry Reports

, Volume 7, Issue 6, pp 478–484 | Cite as

Clinical and legal characteristics of inmates with bipolar disorder

  • Cameron D. Quanbeck
  • Barbara E. McDermott
  • Mark A. Frye


Individuals with bipolar disorder are at an increased risk of criminal arrest compared with those in the population at large. The combination of manic symptoms and substance abuse seem to be the primary illness factors for this increased risk, and the public mental health system has faced challenges in treating these patients successfully in community settings. To decrease the risk for arrest in bipolar patients, clinicians can screen and refer patients for substance use disorders, stabilize mania in hospital settings, and take measures to improve outpatient adherence in the postmanic hospitalization period. Psychiatric advance directives, new developments in civil commitment law, and mental health courts are legal mechanisms that may be critical in preventing the criminalization of those with bipolar disorder.


Bipolar Disorder Severe Mental Illness Bipolar Patient Bipolar Disorder Patient Revolving Door 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Current Science Inc 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cameron D. Quanbeck
    • 1
  • Barbara E. McDermott
  • Mark A. Frye
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Division of Psychiatry and the LawUniversity of California, DavisSacramentoUSA

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