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J Stud Alcohol. 1996 Sep;57(5):543-8.

Suicide attempts and alcohol consumption in an emergency room sample.

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  • 1Division of Epidemiological and Social Sciences, Mexican Institute of Psychiatry, Mexico D.F., Mexico.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The aim of this study was to obtain an epidemiologic measure of association between suicide attempts and alcohol consumption in eight emergency room (ER) hospitals.

METHOD:

All patients were interviewed and breath tested for alcohol consumption. The data were analyzed using the case-control methodology. Cases were patients (N = 40; 21 male) admitted to ER because of a suicide attempt. The control group comprised patients (N = 372) admitted to ER because of accidents that are less frequently reported as alcohol related (i.e., workplace accidents, animal bites, and recreational accidents, except drowning).

RESULTS:

The proportion of suicide attempts under the effects of alcohol was significantly higher than that of the control group. The bivariate odds ratios (and 95% confidence intervals) for self-report of alcohol consumption in the 6 hours prior to the suicide attempt were: abstainers (baseline); 0.001-100 g of alcohol = 2.01 (0.44, 7.85); > 100 g = 31.11 (10.13, 98.61). For habitual alcohol consumption; abstainers (baseline); 0.001-100 g of alcohol = 0.67 (0.25, 1.77); > 100 g = 1.10 (0.44, 2.75). For Alco-Sensor: < or = 9 mg of alcohol/100 ml of blood (baseline); 10.99 mg/100 ml = 8.21 (2.81, 23.73); > or = 100 mg/100 ml = 2.97 (0.42, 15.95). Multiple logistic models did not change these findings.

CONCLUSIONS:

Alcohol consumption prior to the suicide attempt is a more important risk factor than the habitual alcohol consumption pattern. New research should emphasize life events and psychiatric variables and find explanations for differences between the self-reported and the Alco-Sensor estimates.

PMID:
8858552
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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