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J Psychiatr Res. 2017 Jun;89:1-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2017.01.002. Epub 2017 Jan 5.

Cannabis use disorder and suicide attempts in Iraq/Afghanistan-era veterans.

Author information

1
Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA; VA Mid-Atlantic Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Durham, NC, USA; Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA. Electronic address: Nathan.Kimbrel@va.gov.
2
University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL, USA.
3
Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA; VA Mid-Atlantic Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Durham, NC, USA; Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA.
4
VA Mid-Atlantic Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Durham, NC, USA.
5
Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA; VA Mid-Atlantic Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Durham, NC, USA; Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA; VA Center for Health Services Research in Primary Care, Durham, NC, USA.

Abstract

The objective of the present research was to examine the association between lifetime cannabis use disorder (CUD), current suicidal ideation, and lifetime history of suicide attempts in a large and diverse sample of Iraq/Afghanistan-era veterans (N = 3233) using a battery of well-validated instruments. As expected, CUD was associated with both current suicidal ideation (OR = 1.683, p = 0.008) and lifetime suicide attempts (OR = 2.306, p < 0.0001), even after accounting for the effects of sex, posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, alcohol use disorder, non-cannabis drug use disorder, history of childhood sexual abuse, and combat exposure. Thus, the findings from the present study suggest that CUD may be a unique predictor of suicide attempts among Iraq/Afghanistan-era veterans; however, a significant limitation of the present study was its cross-sectional design. Prospective research aimed at understanding the complex relationship between CUD, mental health problems, and suicidal behavior among veterans is clearly needed at the present time.

KEYWORDS:

Cannabis; Depression; Marijuana; Posttraumatic stress; Substance abuse; Suicidal ideation; Suicide; Suicide attempts

PMID:
28129565
PMCID:
PMC5374045
DOI:
10.1016/j.jpsychires.2017.01.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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