“Fuzzy Thinking” Common to Bipolar and Depression? Or to Psychotropics?


Women diagnosed with bipolar or depression did not perform as well on tests measuring the ability to “sustain attention and respond quickly,” according to a study in Brain. “Fuzzy thinking episodes” are “real signs” of bipolar and depression, reported Medical Daily. Though it was not mentioned in the abstract, press release or most news articles about the study, most of the women were taking psychotropics.

According to the press release, the findings from University of Michigan Medical School and Depression Center researchers showed that this “fuzzy thinking” was “rooted in brain activity differences that show up on advanced brain scans.” Because both diagnostic groups had on average higher levels of “fuzzy thinking” relative to controls, the researchers said that this evidence suggested commonalities between depression and bipolar that “could transform the way doctors and patients think about, diagnose and treat them.”

In a table in the study, the authors identified that 63.3% of the women diagnosed with depression and 84.9% of those with bipolar were taking psychotropics at the time. The study did not provide separate results or discussion concerning the medicated and unmedicated people.

Ryan, Kelly A., Erica L. Dawson, Michelle T. Kassel, Anne L. Weldon, David F. Marshall, Kortni K. Meyers, Laura B. Gabriel, et al. “Shared Dimensions of Performance and Activation Dysfunction in Cognitive Control in Females with Mood Disorders.” Brain 138, no. 5 (May 1, 2015): 1424–34. doi:10.1093/brain/awv070. (Abstract and full text)

‘Fuzzy thinking’ in depression and bipolar disorder: New research finds effect is real (University of Michigan Health System press release on MedicalXpress, May 4, 2015)

‘Fuzzy Thinking’ Episodes Are Real Signs Of Depression, Bipolar Disorder: Study (Medical Daily, May 5, 2015)


    • I’ll confess Ted, when I first read the original article, my first question was, what meds where these people on? It’s beyond me that people at the University of Michigan and even the idiots who published this research would not think about that. I guess people just see what they want to see.

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    • “Funding
      M.G.M. is on the Speakers Bureau for Merck Pharmaceuticals.”

      may have something to do with that. I wonder who the reviewers were.

      They supposedly correct for some meds:
      “There were no significant correlations with any of the demographic characteristics (age, education), medication loading for bipolar disorder group (according to the method outlined by Sackeim and colleagues, 2001)”

      I’m not sure what a “medication loading” means though.

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  1. “In other words, instead of despairing over fuzzy thinking and lost attention, take the steps to figure out what might be behind it.”

    It’s the drugs, doctors, not the fictitious diseases.

    “the results add to the mounting evidence that these conditions both fall on a spectrum of mood disorders, rather than being completely unrelated.”

    That’s because the psychiatric drugs cause “fuzzy thinking” for many or even most people who take them. This drug induced problem with concentration is exactly why, historically, and still today the medical community utilizes the psych drugs to gas light patients into the “system,” any time a doctor wants to profit off of covering up easily recognized iatrogenesis or child abuse.

    “And while many individual women with depression or bipolar scored as well on the test as healthy participants, nearly all the test-takers in the bottom 5 percent of performers had one of the two mood disorders.”

    Who was drugged, and who was not?

    When doing scientific experiments one must control the variables, and the drugs these people are taking is an easily measured variable. There is no scientific validity to this study since “The study did not provide separate results or discussion concerning the medicated and unmedicated people.”

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    • Yeah. That should be easy – provide boxplots for the medicated and unmedicated people – plotting the data takes like 5 minutes, I can do it for them if they give me the numbers ;). Taking aside the possible motivations of the authors (look up the “Funding” disclaimer) – who the hell reviewed this study and did not demand such an analysis? I feel like they are all bought and paid.

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  2. Wow! Seeing this article with lived experience makes all the difference in the world.
    I was one of those women with “Fuzzy Thinking” while I was a good docile patient and wife. I stopped working because of it. Now almost drug free I am almost clear of the all the “Fuzziness”.
    So glad to be away from all that, so sad to see so many people especially those in the medical field completely bamboozled. I don’t understand who this type of researching can go on.

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  3. “‘Fuzzy Thinking’ Common to Bipolar and Depression? Or to Psychotropics?”

    No. The fuzziest thinking is clearly taking place inside the brains of those conducting this kind of research.

    Allow me to de-fuzz the situation: Psychiatry creates “fuzzy thinking” through a plethora of abusive methods, most salient of which is psychotropic drugging.

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  4. “Though it was not mentioned in the abstract, press release or most news articles about the study, most of the women were taking psychotropics.”

    I’m laughing because of this. When I was poly drugged I frequently got lost driving and couldn’t follow conversations. My entire behavior, personality, were drastically changed on psychiatric drugs. We here know this is caused by psyche drugs and how in the world psychiatry pretends it’s otherwise IS mind boggling. These drugs are NOT benign.

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    • Good point. One would think that the group on drugs should be thinking clearly in addition to be symptom-free or at least very improved right?
      It’s laughable that they did not bother to divide the group into “treatment” and “no treatment”. It’s not even bad science it’s straight out propaganda piece.

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  5. Wow, when I came off my huge cocktail of drugs the first thing that I could say was an undeniable improvement and what I repeatedly referred to in my writing was my clarity of mind. Yes, the fuzzy thinking was the very first and for a long time the only improvement that allowed me to trust I’d done the right thing after being struck with severe protracted withdrawal issues. Without that gift of clarity I don’t think I could have made it. So this report is astonishing to me and again underscores why I continue to do the work I do that others might not be harmed as I was. That clarity even shown through the worst of neurological impairments (I couldn’t speak, for example for a couple of years) … honestly … wow.

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    • When I told my long time therapist how I had clarity of mind coming off the psych drugs she sneeringly replied it would not last (she fired me for not being drug compliant). The clarity of mind has lasted, for 12 beautiful years. Being able to think clearly got me through the horrible tapering situation and beyond. I’m still astounded how psychiatry will not listen to us but once branded as mentally ill we are not to believed.

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  6. If they don’t correct for the influence of drugs they’re either very, how to say it politely…, intellectually challenged (which can be an issue if you’re trying to pretend you’re a scientist) or they have an agenda.

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