Studies indicate heart rate variability readings from EKGs can indicate major depression or bipolar disorder. These two conditions are so similar that doctors sometimes misdiagnose bipolar disorder as depression. This is a significant error because each condition requires a different kind of treatment. If a patient has bipolar disorder, his or her moods swing between emotional highs, or mania, and severe depression. If a doctor sees a patient during the depression phase of bipolar disorder, a misdiagnosis could cause the doctor to prescribe antidepressants, mood stabilizers, or antipsychotics, which can trigger manic episodes.
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