Prevalence and Correlates of Lifetime Suicidal Ideation and Suicide Attempts Among Latino Subgroups in the United States

Center for Multicultural Mental Health Research, Cambridge Health Alliance/Harvard Medical School, Somerville, Mass. 02143, USA.
The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 5.5). 05/2007; 68(4):572-81. DOI: 10.4088/JCP.v68n0413
Source: PubMed


Limited data are available to understand the prevalence and correlates of suicidal behavior among U.S. Latino subgroups. This article compares the prevalence of lifetime suicidal ideation and suicide attempts among major U.S. Latino ethnic subgroups and identifies psycho-sociocultural factors associated with suicidal behaviors.
The National Latino and Asian American Study includes Spanish- and English-speaking Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, and other Latinos. A total of 2554 interviews were conducted in both English and Spanish by trained interviewers between May 2002 and November 2003. Lifetime psychiatric disorders were measured using the World Health Organization-Composite International Diagnostic Interview. Descriptive statistics and logistic models were used to determine demographic, clinical, cultural, and social correlates of lifetime suicidal ideation and suicide attempts.
The lifetime prevalence of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts among Latinos was 10.1% and 4.4%, respectively. Puerto Ricans were more likely to report ideation as compared with other Latino subgroups, but this difference was eliminated after adjustments for demographic, psychiatric, and sociocultural factors. Most lifetime suicide attempts described by Latinos were reported as occurring when they were under the age of 18 years. Any lifetime DSM-IV diagnoses, including dual diagnoses, were associated with an increased risk of lifetime suicidal ideation and suicide attempts among Latinos. In addition, female gender, acculturation (born in the United States and English speaking), and high levels of family conflict were independently and positively correlated with suicide attempts among Latinos, even among those without any psychiatric disorder.
These findings reinforce the importance of understanding the process of acculturation, the role of family, and the sociocultural context for suicide risk among Latinos. These should be considered in addition to psychiatric diagnoses and symptoms in Latino suicide research, treatment, and prevention, especially among young individuals.

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    • "Please cite this article as: Polanco-Roman, L., et al., Ethnic differences in prevalence and correlates of self-harm behaviors in a treatment-seeking sample of emerging adults. Psychiatry Research (2014), et al., 2006; Fortuna et al., 2007). More research is thus needed to resolve these inconsistencies. "
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    Psychiatry Research 10/2014; 220(2014):927-934. DOI:10.1016/j.psychres.2014.09.017 · 2.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose: Suicide is the third leading cause of death among adolescents. Research shows Hispanic adolescents report disproportionate rates of both suicidal ideation and attempts. The purpose of the present study was twofold. First, the present study aimed to document the presence of suicidal ideation and self-harm behavior in a large heterogeneous sample of Hispanic adolescents. Second, this study sought to identify specific and unique culturally relevant stressors that were associated with the higher self-reported suicidal thoughts and self-harm among Hispanic males and females separately. Methods: Data were collected on 1,651 Hispanic adolescents who completed the Hispanic Stress Inventory-Adolescent Version. Results: Results of both rates and culture-related stressors that associated with the high rates of suicidal ideation are presented. Of the eight subscales measured in the Hispanic Stress Inventory-Adolescent, four subscales were predictive of either suicidal ideation or self-harm. For males, Acculturation Gap Stress was associated with suicidal thoughts and Discrimination Stress was associated with both suicidal thoughts and self-harm behavior. For females, Family Drug Stress was associated with suicidal thoughts. Acculturation Gap Stress, Family Drug Stress, and Immigration Stress were all significantly associated with self-harm behaviors. Conclusions: Findings are discussed as they inform future culturally competent prevention interventions and future research studies.
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    • "Ninguno participante expresa que piensa que habrá después de su muerte, ni las reacciones de su familia a esta muerte. Algunos estudios han señalado que la conducta suicida en poblaciones latinas se da en el contexto de situaciones estresantes, por tanto el intento de suicidio es impulsivo (Fortuna et al., 2007). Algunas mujeres latinas con intento de suicidio estudiadas en EUA (Zayas & Pilat, 2008), refieren que al momento de intentar suicidarse, no pensaron en su muerte. "
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