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Psychiatry Journal
Volume 2016, Article ID 5839181, 10 pages
Research Article

Comparison of Sexual Experience and Behavior between Bipolar Outpatients and Outpatients without Mood Disorders

1Department of Psychiatry, New York State Psychiatric Institute and Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, NY 10032, USA
2Department of Psychiatry, Weill Cornell Medical School, New York, NY 10021, USA
3Department of Psychiatry, Carson Tahoe Health System, Carson City, NV 89701, USA
4Department of Psychiatry, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, NY 10021, USA
5Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, CO 80045, USA
6Behavioral Health and Recovery Services, San Mateo County Psychiatric Department, San Mateo, CA 94403, USA

Received 11 December 2015; Revised 1 March 2016; Accepted 14 March 2016

Academic Editor: Umberto Albert

Copyright © 2016 Jennifer Downey et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Sexual behavior over the past year of 32 outpatients with Bipolar disorder is compared to that of 44 Comparison patients that had never had an episode of affective illness. Subjects were outpatients treated with drugs and psychotherapy in routine office practice. Differences in sexual behavior between the two groups as a whole were minimal, but meaningful differences emerged when subgroups were compared. Compared to control men, Bipolar men had had more partners in the last year and were more likely to have had sex without condoms. Compared to Bipolar females, Bipolar males had more sex partners, had more sex with strangers, and were more likely to have engaged in homosexual behavior. Even so, some patients in the Comparison group also had engaged in risky sexual behavior. They had failed to use condoms and had had sex with strangers and prostitutes during the previous year.