Recently, a remastered version was released of the album 'Nevermind' by the American grunge band Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain. This album was released in 1991. The 30th 'birthday' of it apparently a good reason for a reissue.
Why are we naming this album here? Because of the song titled 'Lithium'. We have something with that at Fisic. Especially because of measurements of the lithium and creatinine that you can do on location with our Point-of-Care device. The results can then be discussed directly with patients. This leads to a higher degree of adherence to therapy and thus to more stability and quality of life for patients.
Nirvana's song is a reference to Cobain's bipolar disorder and his "love/hate" relationship with lithium. From the text you can conclude that Kurt Cobain knew very well that compliance with the correct lithium medication is critical. The song has been in the Top 2000 for several years now and this year is ranked number 257. It can be heard on Thursday December 30 between 11 p.m. and midnight on NPO2 in the Netherlands.
In itself remarkable that in this issue in 1991 Cobain so openly discussed his bipolarity and lithium medication. Because speaking about your mental health is not self-evident even in 2021. As, amongst others, shown by the documentary #Uitdeshadow which Hanna Verboom recently made about its bipolarity.
Cobain's song Lithium has been covered by various formations. Just google "Lithium - Nirvana". You will find an impressive performance from 2007 by the 23 band members of the American symphonic pop group 'The Polyphonic Spree'. Also listen to the cheerful sounding version of the Jamaican Little Roy (2011), which – how could it be otherwise – has a reggae-like feel. And the beautiful piano version of the song performed by French pianist/composer Maxence Cyrin (2009). Worth a listen.
Whether all those covers were really included from a commitment to people with bipolar disorder and lithium medication remains a question for us too. Fortunately, more and more attention is being paid to bipolarity. Like in the spy series Homeland where the main character Carrie Mathison has bipolar disorder and also uses lithium. And in the play that Roos Schlikker wrote: 'Mother of Glass'
We will certainly come back to all those forms of attention for bipolarity – and lithium medication – at some point.
But first Christmas and New Year's Eve. With Nirvana's song Lithium in the Top 2000. We wish you a very Merry Christmas and a beautiful and healthy 2022!!!