• bipolar disorder;
  • diabetes;
  • dyslipidemia;
  • insulin resistance;
  • metabolic syndrome;
  • obesity

Objective: We aimed to determine the prevalence of obesity and metabolic syndrome (O/MetS) in a sample of Brazilian outpatients with bipolar disorder.

Methods: Eighty-four patients with bipolar disorder were evaluated. We used the definition of MetS established in the Third Report of the National Cholesterol Education Program Expert Panel on Detection, Evaluation and Treatment of High Blood Cholesterol in Adults, modified by the American Heart Association (AHA). Patients were classified as obese if their body mass index (BMI) was ≥ 30 kg/m2.

Results: We found that 28.6% of our sample met the AHA criteria for MetS and 35.7% were obese. The percentage of patients meeting each criterion of the AHA was as follows: 46% for abdominal obesity; 44% for hypertriglyceridemia or cholesterol-lowering medication use; 26% for low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol or being on a lipid-lowering medication; 45% for hypertension; and 20% for high fasting glucose or anti-diabetic medication use.

Conclusions: The prevalence of obesity in our sample of outpatients with bipolar disorder was higher than that observed for the general population of Brazil. The rate of MetS was similar to that observed for the general population. Our data indicate the need for prevention, early detection and treatment of O/MetS in patients with bipolar disorder.