Hypomania is a distinct state related to mania but not as severe. The use of "hypo" indicates "less than mania" and should not be confused with apathy,catatonia or a low energy state. It can be seen with bipolar and other disorders.


Hypomania involves:

(1) distinct period or episode lasting >= 4 days

(2) >= 1 key symptom

(3) (>= 3 additional features if elevated or expansive mood present) OR (>= 4 additional features if irritable mood is the only key symptoms, including inflated self-esteem)

(4) >= 1 occurrence in the past 12 months


Key symptoms:

(1) abnormally and persistently elevated and expansive mood

(2) abnormally and persistently irritable mood


Additional findings:

(1) inflated self-esteem or grandiosity

(2) decreased need for sleep

(3) pressure to keep talking or talking more than usual

(4) flight or racing of thoughts

(5) distractability

(6) increase in a goal-oriented activity or psychomotor agitation

(7) excessive involvement in pleasurable activities that can have negative consequences (buying spree, sex, etc)


The differential diagnosis includes

(1) mania which features psychosis, need for hospitalization and/or marked impairment/disability

(2) aggressive personality



(1) chronic hypomania (hyperthymia)

(2) brief-episode hypomania (duration of an episode less than 4 days)

(3) subyndromal (symptoms present but do not meet criteria hypomania)


To read more or access our algorithms and calculators, please log in or register.