Compulsive shopping can be one of the many symptoms of bipolar disorder but cannot be used in and of itself to diagnose the condition. According to a 2012 study published in the National Library of Medicine, compulsive buying was found to be higher in bipolar patients than in the healthy control group.
Psych Central reports that because of compulsive shopping and other impulsive financial decisions, those with bipolar disorder are more likely to have issues with debt than the rest of the general population. These impulsive financial decisions usually happen during manic phases and may include gambling, shopping to self-medicate, buying extravagant gifts, and making investments without enough proper planning and research. These decisions can lead to financial stress, depression, and even suicide.