Behavior: Maude's Mania

Television's Maude is an erratic woman, occasionally daffy, but is she a manic-depressive? And in this week's episode, does she actually take lithium carbonate, hailed by one specialist as "the first wonder drug of psychiatry"? Only her doctor knows for sure. Her scriptwriters don't, because they fudged the symptoms of manic-depression and substituted "proper medication" for "lithium"—all because Maude's illness was likely to create a stir in real-life medical circles.

Lithium, a natural alkali salt of the same family as sodium and potassium, is an accepted drug, but exactly who should be taking...