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Diagnosis of Schizophrenia Ups Risk of Suicide Attempts

Diagnosis of Schizophrenia Ups Risk of Suicide Attempts

University of Toronto researchers have discovered that among individuals with schizophrenia, the risk of suicide attempts is significantly elevated.

Sadly, investigators found that those with schizophrenia who’d been physically abused during childhood were five times more likely to have attempted suicide.

Overall, the lifetime prevalence of suicide attempts among individuals with schizophrenia was 39.2 percent compared to 2.8 percent of those without the disorder, according to the study.

“Even after taking into account most of the known risk factors for suicide attempts, those with schizophrenia had six times the odds of having attempted suicide in comparison to those without schizophrenia,” reported lead author Dr. Esme Fuller-Thomson.

The study examined a representative sample of 21,744 community-dwelling Canadians, of whom 101 reported they had been diagnosed with schizophrenia. Data were drawn from the 2012 Canadian Community Health Survey-Mental Health.

“When we focused only on the 101 individuals with schizophrenia, we found that women and those with a history of drug or alcohol abuse and/or major depressive disorder were much more likely to have attempted suicide,” said co-author Bailey Hollister, a recent social work graduate.

Traumatic events in youth appear to be a strong influence for suicidal ideation. Researchers discovered individuals with schizophrenia who reported that they had been physically abused during their childhood were five times more likely to have attempted suicide.

Statistically, this history of abuse and other early adversities explained 24 percent of the variability in suicide attempts, said the authors.

“Clearly those with schizophrenia are an extremely vulnerable population. Knowledge of the added risk of suicide attempts associated with childhood abuse and substance abuse could help clinicians improve targeting and outreach to this population,” said Fuller-Thomson.

Source: University of Toronto
 
Overdose photo by shutterstock.

Diagnosis of Schizophrenia Ups Risk of Suicide Attempts

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2016). Diagnosis of Schizophrenia Ups Risk of Suicide Attempts. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 16, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2016/02/11/diagnosis-of-schizophrenia-ups-risk-of-suicide-attempts/98969.html

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 11 Feb 2016
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 11 Feb 2016
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.