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Psychiatry Investig. 2018 Feb;15(2):156-163. doi: 10.30773/pi.2017.05.31.1. Epub 2017 Nov 29.

Gender Differences of Occupational Stress Associated with Suicidal Ideation among South Korean Employees: The Kangbuk Samsung Health Study.

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Department of Psychiatry, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Workplace Mental Health Institute, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.



In this study, the relationship between occupational stress and suicidal ideation was investigated, focusing on gender differences among Korean employees.


Cross-sectional data for 53,969 workers were collected at Kangbuk Samsung Hospital health screening centers. Risk of suicidal ideation was assessed using a self-reported questionnaire examining suicidal ideation during the past year. Occupational stress was measured using 24 items of the Korean Occupational Stress Scale-Short Form (KOSS-SF). Logistic regression analysis was employed to estimate the odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals of the relationships between suicidal ideation and components of occupational stress.


In multivariable-adjusted models, all job stress contributed to increased risk of suicidal ideation in males. Most subscales, except insufficient job control and organizational system, were risk factors of suicidal ideation in females. Further adjustments for depression markedly attenuated this relationship. However, the effects of insufficient job control and lack of reward on suicidal ideation remained significant in males, and interpersonal conflict remained significant in females.


The results suggest that occupational stress plays a significant role in increasing risk of suicidal ideation through elevation of depressive symptoms. Gender differences in components of occupational stress associated with suicidal ideation were also observed.


Gender; Occupational stress; Suicide

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