March 18, 2021

A digital self-report survey of mood for bipolar disorder

New paper published in Bipolar Disorders

Author Dr. Amy Cochran, who is now at the University of Wisconsin, completed a post-doctoral program at the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor where she worked closely with the Prechter Program. Tijana Sagorac Gruichich worked for Dr. Cochran doing undergraduate research.

Tijana Sagorac Gruichich
Tijana Sagorac Gruichich

Digital research, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, has proven to be integral to how we understand bipolar disorder (BP). This study sought to validate a 6-item digital self-report survey for measuring mood in BP (digiBP). In collaboration with the University of Wisconsin - Madison, participants for this study were recruited from the Prechter Longitudinal Study of Bipolar Disorder. Results of this study have been accepted in Bipolar Disorders: A digital self‐report survey of mood for bipolar disorder.

Different from existing digital tools, digiBP assesses symptoms on a multi-dimensional scale by producing two scores that measure manic and depressive (m and d) severity. Three items measured common depressive symptoms, two items measured common manic symptoms, and one item measured a common symptom of both mania and depression. Participants logged their symptoms twice daily for 6 weeks through a mobile app called Lorevimo (Log, Review, and Visualize your Mood).

Internally, the team verified the survey best fit within the proposed multi-dimensional scale. Externally, the team found that digiBP survey scores agreed with scores of longer, more traditional surveys that measure mood. Longitudinally, the researchers were able to predict individual future scores from past scores.

Although the survey would benefit from further validation in larger and more diverse populations, the team hopes that researchers consider digiBP for their next digital study of bipolar disorder.