Prof. Dr. Kemal Arıkan
Psychiatrist

Can Bipolar Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder be the same?

Bipolar Bozukluk ve Borderline Kişilik Bozukluğu Aynı Olabilir mi?

In brief, Bipolar Disorder (BP) interrupts people’s daily lives through symptoms of attention deficits, lack of insight, showing risky behaviors, inner uneasiness, and inconsistency in relationships.

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), however, comes into prominence by means of forming inconsistent and tense relationships, an inconsistent perception of self, self-harming behaviors, inconsistent emotional changes, difficulty in anger management, fear of abandonment, and impulsive behaviors.

While some studies consider Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) to be a subtype of Bipolar Disorder (BD), some claim that BPD is a disorder that is independent of BD due to its specific clinical attributes. Neuroimaging methods are utilized in order to research whether these two disorders represent the same entity.

Using the EEG method, it was researched whether there were any biological differences between Borderline Personality Disorder and Bipolar Disorder. As per the research results, more power was found in the fast and slow oscillations in the qEEG in both disorders.  Structural neuroimaging studies report a reduction in the prefrontal cortex volume in both disorders.

Unstable mood, impulsivity, and showing behaviors with potentially damaging results are the similar behavioral findings spotted in both disorders. The study shows that these two clinical cases (BPD and BD) are biologically similar; nevertheless, more studies are required to account for the fundamental clinical differences between Borderline Personality Disorder and Bipolar Disorder.

SOURCE:
Arikan, M. K., Metin, B., Gunver, M. G., & Tarhan, N. (2019). Borderline Personality and Bipolar Disorders Cannot Be Differentiated Electrophysiologically. Clinical EEG and Neuroscience.

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