ABSTRACT Suicide receives increasing attention worldwide, with many countries developing national strategies for prevention. Rates of suicide vary greatly between countries, with the greatest burdens in developing countries. Many more men than women die by suicide. Although suicide rates in elderly people have fallen in many countries, those in young people have risen. Rates also vary with ethnic origin, employment status, and occupation. Most people who die by suicide have psychiatric disorders, notably mood, substance-related, anxiety, psychotic, and personality disorders, with comorbidity being common. Previous self-harm is a major risk factor. Suicide is also associated with physical characteristics and disorders and smoking. Family history of suicidal behaviour is important, as are upbringing, exposure to suicidal behaviour by others and in the media, and availability of means. Approaches to suicide prevention include those targeting high-risk groups and population strategies. There are, however, many challenges to large-scale prevention, especially in developing countries.
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ABSTRACT: Prior studies of risk factors associated with external causes of death have been limited in the number of covariates investigated and external causes examined. Herein, associations between numerous demographic, lifestyle, and health-related factors and the major causes of external mortality, such as suicide, homicide, and accident, were assessed prospectively among 73,422 black and white participants in the Southern Community Cohort Study (SCCS). Hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated in multivariate regression analyses using the Cox proportional hazards model. Men compared with women (HR = 2.32; 95% CI: 1.87-2.89), current smokers (HR = 1.74; 95% CI: 1.40-2.17), and unemployed/never employed participants at the time of enrollment (HR = 1.67; 95% CI 1.38-2.02) had increased risk of dying from all external causes, with similarly elevated HRs for suicide, homicide, and accidental death among both blacks and whites. Blacks compared with whites had lower risk of accidental death (HR = 0.46; 95% CI: 0.38-0.57) and suicide (HR = 0.55; 95% CI: 0.31-0.99). Blacks and whites in the SCCS had comparable risks of homicide death (HR = 1.05; 95% CI: 0.63-1.76); however, whites in the SCCS had unusually high homicide rates compared with all whites who were resident in the 12 SCCS states, while black SCCS participants had homicide rates similar to those of all blacks residing in the SCCS states. Depression was the strongest risk factor for suicide, while being married was protective against death from homicide in both races. Being overweight/obese at enrollment was associated with reduced risks in all external causes of death, and the number of comorbid conditions was a risk factor for iatrogenic deaths. Most risk factors identified in earlier studies of external causes of death were confirmed in the SCCS cohort, in spite of the low SES of SCCS participants. Results from other epidemiologic cohorts are needed to confirm the novel findings identified in this study.PLoS ONE 12/2014; 9(12):e114852. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: To investigate the prevalence of depression, suicidal ideations, alcohol and nicotine consumption in adults in an agrarian society mostly unchanged by the effects of urbanization. The Central India Eye and Medical Study is a population-based study in rural Central India close to the tribal belt and included 4711 subjects (aged 30+ years). Depression was assessed by the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CESD), suicidal ideation by six standardized questions, nicotine use by the Fagerstroem Nicotine Tolerance Questionnaire (FTNQ), and alcohol consumption by the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT). Mild to moderate depression (CESD sum score: 15-21) was detected in 1862 (39.6%) individuals (33.5% of men, 44.8 of women), and major depression (CESD sum score >21) in 613 (13.0%) individuals (8.1 of men, 17.3% of women). Suicide attempt was reported by 199 (4.2%) participants and suicidal thoughts during the last 6 months by 238 (5.1%) individuals. There were 887 (18.9%) smokers and smokeless tobacco was consumed by 1968 (41.8%) subjects. Alcohol consumption was reported by 1081 (23.0%) participants; 283 (6.0%) subjects had an AUDIT score ≥8 (hazardous drinking), and 108 (4.63%) subjects a score ≥13 (women) or ≥15 (men) (alcohol dependence). In rural Central India, prevalence of major depression was comparable to figures reported from other developing countries. Prevalence of smoking and hazardous alcohol consumption was higher than as reported from urban regions. Measures should be taken to address the relatively high prevalence of suicide attempts and thoughts on suicide in rural Central India.PLoS ONE 11/2014; 9(11):e113550. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Suicide is a major public health problem and globally is the second leading cause of death in young adults. Globally, there are 164,000 suicides per year in young people under 25 years. Depression is a strong risk factor for suicide. Evidence shows that 45% of those completing suicide, including young adults, contact their general practitioner rather than a mental health professional in the month before their death. Further evidence indicates that risk factors or early warning signs of suicide in young people go undetected and untreated by general practitioners. Healthcare-based suicide prevention interventions targeted at general practitioners are designed to increase identification of at-risk young people. The rationale of this type of intervention is that early identification and improved clinical management of at-risk individuals will reduce morbidity and mortality. This systematic review will synthesise evidence on the effectiveness of education interventions for general practitioners in identifying and managing depression as a suicide risk factor in young people.Methods/design: We shall conduct a systematic review and meta-analysis following the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions guidelines and conform to the reporting guidelines of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) statement recommendations. Electronic databases will be systematically searched for randomised controlled trials and quasi-experimental studies investigating the effectiveness of interventions for general practitioners in identifying and managing depression as a suicide risk factor in young people in comparison to any other intervention, no intervention, usual care or waiting list. Grey literature will be searched by screening trial registers. Only studies published in English will be included. No date restrictions will be applied. Two authors will independently screen titles and abstracts of potential studies. The primary outcome is identification and management of depression. Secondary outcomes are suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, deliberate self-harm, knowledge of suicide risk factors and suicide-related behaviours, attitudes towards suicide risk and suicide-related behaviours, confidence in dealing with suicide risk factors and suicide-related behaviour. Our study will inform the development of future education interventions and provide feasibility and acceptability evidence, to help general practitioners identify and manage suicidal behaviour in young people.Systematic review registration: PROSPERO registration number: CRD42014009110.Systematic reviews. 12/2014; 3(1):145.