Study Suggests Psychotic Experiences Help Predict Suicidal Behavior

????????FROM Psychiatric News Alert: Individuals with psychiatric disorders reporting psychotic experiences are more likely to report concurrent suicidal ideation and suicide attempts than those who do not report psychotic experiences, according to a study that appears online in JAMA Psychiatry. Psychotic experiences were especially prevalent among individuals reporting severe attempts and may account for nearly one-third of attempts with intent to die in the United States annually, according to the report.

Researchers from Columbia University, the New York State Psychiatric Institute, and the University of Maryland School of Social Work examined the association between 12-month suicidality and 12-month psychotic experiences. The researchers found that individuals reporting psychotic experiences were approximately five times more likely to report suicidal ideation and nearly 10 times more likely to report a suicide attempt during a 12-month period. In contrast, depressive, anxiety, and substance use disorders did not reliably identify those at risk for attempts among respondents with suicidal ideation.

Immediate past APA President Jeffrey Lieberman, M.D., a coauthor of the study, noted that the increased risk for suicidal ideation and suicide attempts was especially high among people aged 18 to 29, whether or not these young people had a primary diagnosis of psychotic disorder.

“This study of a community-based epidemiological sample identified psychotic experience as a predictor of suicidal behavior in young people in particular. This finding can be considered an important risk factor for suicide in youth in the context of a wide range of mental disorders and can be applied in clinical practice.”

For more information see the Psychiatric News article, “Teens’ Psychotic Symptoms Strongly Associated With Suicidal Behavior.”

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