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Curr Opin Pediatr. 2002 Dec;14(6):713-7.

Suicidality in children and adolescents: a review.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry and Psychology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota 55905, USA.


Suicide and suicide attempts by children and adolescents continue to be a major public health problem in the United States. Major risk factors include a previous suicide attempt, a mood disorder, a family history of suicide, a parental psychiatric disorder, and a history of sexual abuse. Genetic vulnerability appears to be a factor as well. Efforts to prevent subsequent attempts at suicide have not generally been successful, and many children and adolescents are not receiving treatment for the mood disorders and other psychiatric conditions that are risk factors. Evaluation of suicide risk should be carried out through multiple informants, not simply the adolescent or the parents, although a thorough clinical interview of the adolescent is essential.

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