Enhanced working and verbal memory after lamotrigine treatment in pediatric bipolar disorder

Authors


  • MNP receives research support, unrelated to this manuscript, from NIMH, NICHD, The Dana Foundation, The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, NARSAD Independent Investigator Award, Abbott Pharmaceuticals (study medication), and Johnson & Johnson (study medication). JAS has received research support, unrelated to this work, from NIH, GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson, and AstraZeneca. AMP, TM, and JAC have no financial relationships to disclose.

Corresponding author:
Mani N. Pavuluri, M.D., Ph.D.
Institute for Juvenile Research and Center for Cognitive Medicine
University of Illinois at Chicago
912 South Wood Street (M/C 913)
Chicago, IL 60612, USA
Fax: 312-413-0063
E-mail: mpavuluri@psych.uic.edu

Abstract

Pavuluri MN, Passarotti AM, Mohammed T, Carbray JA, Sweeney JA. Enhanced working and verbal memory after lamotrigine treatment in pediatric bipolar disorder.
Bipolar Disord 2010: 12: 213–220. © 2010 The Authors.
Journal compilation © 2010 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

Objective:  To examine the treatment impact of lamotrigine on the neurocognitive profile of patients with pediatric bipolar disorder (PBD).

Method:  Healthy controls (HC) (n = 24; mean age = 12.4 ± 3.3 years) and unmedicated PBD patients with manic, mixed, or hypomanic episodes (n = 34; mean age = 13 ± 3.1 years) were matched for IQ, age, sex, race, and socioeconomic status. A neurocognitive battery was administered at baseline and again after 14 weeks, during which PBD patients were treated with lamotrigine.

Results:  Clinical symptoms improved with treatment in the patient group with significant change from baseline to follow-up on the Young Mania Rating Scale (p < 0.001) and the Children’s Depression Rating Scale–Revised (p < 0.001). Global neurocognitive function improved with lamotrigine in PBD patients over time relative to that in HC, although overall performance remained impaired. Working memory and verbal memory significantly improved with treatment in patients, and deficits in these domains were no longer significantly impaired relative to HC at follow-up. Executive function significantly improved with treatment in the patient group but still lagged behind HC at follow-up. Performance on attention tests did not improve with treatment.

Conclusions:  There appears to be significant improvement in cognitive abilities in PBD patients treated with lamotrigine that is most prominent in the areas of working memory and verbal memory and that occurs along with mood stabilization.

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