open access

Vol 10, No 2 (2013)
Review paper
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Suicides of patients at psychiatric hospitals — preliminary studies

Agnieszka Gmitrowicz, Agata Orzechowska, Monika Talarowska, Antoni Florkowski
Psychiatria 2013;10(2):84-90.

open access

Vol 10, No 2 (2013)
Prace poglądowe - nadesłane

Abstract

Introduction. Suicides in psychiatrically treated patients are also recorded while patients are hospitalised or immediately after discharge. Some of the patients deny any suicidal thoughts before committing suicide, justifying the necessity to study risk factors, which may lead to suicide in hospitalised, psychiatrically treated patients. The aim of the study was a demographic characteristic of psychiatrically hospitalised patients, who had committed suicide, either during hospitalisation or within a week from discharge. An attempted analysis aimed at determining the circumstances of committed suicide, the prevalence of suicide methods, selected by the patients, the relationship of committed suicide with earlier psychiatric diagnosis and previous suicidal behaviours, as well as with the duration of psychic disorders and the number of hospitalisations. Material and methods. Retrospective studies were carried out. The analysis comprised 23 medical records of patients from two large psychiatric hospitals (Lodz, Poland). The selected medical records concerned the patients, who either died by suicide during hospitalisation or within one week from discharge. A questionnaire with selected variables was filled up for each of the patients. Results. Women prevailed (56%) among the suicidal cases, analysed over the period from 1988 up to 2011. Each 5th victim of suicide was below 20 and each 4th was below 60 years old. Most of the victims had completed primary education and had been receiving either retirement or disablement benefit. Almost each 3rd patient committed suicide while being on a pass. Hanging was the most frequent method of suicide. Suicidal thoughts before suicide commitment were confirmed by almost 40%, while suicidal attempts were confirmed in two patients only. Psychotic disorders were most frequently diagnosed, followed by depressive disorders. In the majority of the suicidal victims, two or more hospitalisations were recorded with disease duration above one year. Conclusions. The high-risk group of suicide includes psychiatrically hospitalised patients below 20 years of age, with psychotic disorders, repeatedly hospitalised. The procedures at psychiatric hospitals should include recording of suicidal behaviours, suicide risk assessments and a strict compliance to the principles of treating a patient in suicidal crisis, with a special emphasis on eliminating any availability of suicide methods, as suicide prevention.

Abstract

Introduction. Suicides in psychiatrically treated patients are also recorded while patients are hospitalised or immediately after discharge. Some of the patients deny any suicidal thoughts before committing suicide, justifying the necessity to study risk factors, which may lead to suicide in hospitalised, psychiatrically treated patients. The aim of the study was a demographic characteristic of psychiatrically hospitalised patients, who had committed suicide, either during hospitalisation or within a week from discharge. An attempted analysis aimed at determining the circumstances of committed suicide, the prevalence of suicide methods, selected by the patients, the relationship of committed suicide with earlier psychiatric diagnosis and previous suicidal behaviours, as well as with the duration of psychic disorders and the number of hospitalisations. Material and methods. Retrospective studies were carried out. The analysis comprised 23 medical records of patients from two large psychiatric hospitals (Lodz, Poland). The selected medical records concerned the patients, who either died by suicide during hospitalisation or within one week from discharge. A questionnaire with selected variables was filled up for each of the patients. Results. Women prevailed (56%) among the suicidal cases, analysed over the period from 1988 up to 2011. Each 5th victim of suicide was below 20 and each 4th was below 60 years old. Most of the victims had completed primary education and had been receiving either retirement or disablement benefit. Almost each 3rd patient committed suicide while being on a pass. Hanging was the most frequent method of suicide. Suicidal thoughts before suicide commitment were confirmed by almost 40%, while suicidal attempts were confirmed in two patients only. Psychotic disorders were most frequently diagnosed, followed by depressive disorders. In the majority of the suicidal victims, two or more hospitalisations were recorded with disease duration above one year. Conclusions. The high-risk group of suicide includes psychiatrically hospitalised patients below 20 years of age, with psychotic disorders, repeatedly hospitalised. The procedures at psychiatric hospitals should include recording of suicidal behaviours, suicide risk assessments and a strict compliance to the principles of treating a patient in suicidal crisis, with a special emphasis on eliminating any availability of suicide methods, as suicide prevention.

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Keywords

suicide, patient, psychiatric hospitalization

About this article
Title

Suicides of patients at psychiatric hospitals — preliminary studies

Journal

Psychiatria (Psychiatry)

Issue

Vol 10, No 2 (2013)

Article type

Review paper

Pages

84-90

Bibliographic record

Psychiatria 2013;10(2):84-90.

Keywords

suicide
patient
psychiatric hospitalization

Authors

Agnieszka Gmitrowicz
Agata Orzechowska
Monika Talarowska
Antoni Florkowski

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