J Korean Neuropsychiatr Assoc.  2022 May;61(2):98-109. 10.4306/jknpa.2022.61.2.98.

Korean Medication Algorithm Project for Bipolar Disorder 2022: Overview

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Sanggye Paik Hospital, College of Medicine, Inje University, Seoul, Korea
  • 2Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea
  • 3Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, Chung-Ang University, Seoul, Korea
  • 4Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, Chosun University, Gwangju, Korea
  • 5Department of Psychiatry, Wonkwang University Hospital, School of Medicine, Wonkwang University, Iksan, Korea
  • 6Department of Psychiatry, Haeundae Paik Hospital, College of Medicine, Inje University, Busan, Korea
  • 7Department of Psychiatry, Soonchunhyang University Cheonan Hospital, College of Medicine, Soonchunhyang University, Cheonan, Korea
  • 8Department of Psychiatry, Hallym University Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea
  • 9Department of Psychiatry, Keyo Hospital, Uiwang, Korea
  • 10Department of Psychiatry, Jeju National University Hospital, Jeju, Korea
  • 11Department of Psychiatry, Naju National Hospital, Naju, Korea


The pharmacotherapy of bipolar disorder is complex. A treatment guideline or algorithm can help clinicians implement better practices and clinical decisions. Therefore, the Korean Medication Algorithm Project for Bipolar Disorder (KMAP-BP) was revised through expert consensus on pharmacotherapy for bipolar disorder.
We revised the KMAP-BP 2018 questionnaire and conducted a survey of expert clinicians. Out of ninety-three members of the review committee, eighty-seven completed the survey. We analyzed the answers, discussed the data, and held a clinician hearing. Here, we report the results from KMAP-BP 2022.
The preferred first-step strategies for acute euphoric mania are a combination of a mood stabilizer (MS) and an atypical antipsychotic (AAP), MS monotherapy, and AAP monotherapy. For psychotic mania, an MS and AAP combination, and AAP monotherapy are preferred. For hypomania, MS monotherapy and AAP monotherapy are preferred. The first-step strategies for mild to moderate bipolar depression are MS monotherapy, lamotrigine (LMT) monotherapy, AAP monotherapy, an MS+AAP combination, and an AAP+LMT combination. For non-psychotic severe depression, the MS+AAP combination, the AAP+LMT combination, and the MS+LMT combination are preferred. For psychotic severe depression, MS+AAP and AAP+LMT are preferred.
We obtained expert consensus and developed KMAP-BP 2022. Compared with KMAP-BP 2018, we can figure out clinicians’ preferences and decisions in real clinical situations more clearly. The preference for AAP increased, and that of MS and an antidepressant decreased. We hope KMAP-BP 2022 is helpful for clinicians who treat patients with bipolar disorder.


Bipolar disorder; KMAP-BP 2022; Pharmacotherapy; Algorithm
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