Thursday, December 20, 2007

Danish suicide study shows surprising results

Studies dating back over a hundred years have highlighted the links between the risk of suicide and low income, unemployment, educational underachievement and singleness. However, a similar consistency between suicide and these factors has not been found among people with psychiatric disorders. This is important as nearly half the people who kill themselves have previously been admitted to hospital with a psychiatric disorder and more than 90% of people who commit suicide have a diagnosable psychiatric illness. A study of 96,369 patients admitted to hospital in Denmark with psychiatric problems found that higher income, employment, postgraduate education and marriage were all linked to a higher risk of suicide in this group. However, loss of earnings, employment and marriage among people who had previously had them was found to increase the risk of suicide.

Agerbo, Eshen - High income, employment, postgraduate education, and marriage : a suicidal cocktail among psychiatric patients Archives of General Psychiatry December 2007, 64(12), 1377-1384

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