The Psychological Assessment of Depression: Unipolars Versus Bipolars

Scott Wetzler, Ali Khadivi, Sara Oppenheim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Psychological test differences between unipolar (UD) and bipolar (BD) depressed inpatients were examined using the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI, Hathaway and McKinley, 1943; MMPI-2, Butcher, Dahlstrom, Graham, Tellegen, & Kaemmer, 1989), Millón Clinical Multiaxial Inventory (MCMI, Millón, 1983; MCMI-II, Millón, 1987), and Symptom Checklist-90 (SCL-90-R, Derogatis, 1983). One hundred fifty-eight UD patients and 26 BD patients took these self-report tests at the beginning of their hospitalization. Results indicate that there were few consistent findings across the three tests (or versions of tests). Contrary to some previous studies, the BD patients did not exhibit a “social desirability” response set, nor did they produce “normal” test profiles. Although the tests were not able to identify depressed patients with past manic episodes, BD patients were more narcissistic, driven, and willing to engage in antisocial practices than were UD patients. These findings are discussed in terms of the clinical similarities between UD and BD patients during a depressive episode as well as the limitations of cross-sectional self-report measures to evaluate historical information regarding course of illness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)557-566
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Personality Assessment
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 1 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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