Post-mortem data about people who have commited suicide is usually gathered from a variety of available sources including friends and family (informants), medical and psychiatric records. While previous research has shown that informants can supply reliable information about patients' recent stressful life events it is unknown whether informants and patients provide concordant (in agreement) data about adverse early life experiences such as childhood sexual abuse. A U.S. study compared the accounts of 88 depressed patients over 50 with those of their informants who both completed items from the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire. Informants' reports of patients' severe sexual abuse histories were in high agreement with patients' reports, however, the level of agreement was significantly lower for 'milder' forms of sexual abuse.
Gamble, Stephanie A. ... [et al] - Concordance about childhood sexual abuse among depressed patients 50 and over and their family and friends. Archives of Suicide Research November 2007, 11(4), 321-326