What is the prognosis for depression and suicide?

Updated: Sep 02, 2020
  • Author: Louise B Andrew, MD, JD; Chief Editor: Barry E Brenner, MD, PhD, FACEP  more...
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Morbidity associated with depression is difficult to quantify. The lethality of depression, however, in the form of completed suicide, can be measured, with suicide being the eighth leading cause of death in the United States.

As previously mentioned, 1.4% of all deaths worldwide in 2005 were attributed to suicide, although the true incidence may, as a result of underreporting, be significantly higher. Almost all people who kill themselves intentionally have a diagnosable mental disorder with or without substance abuse, which in itself is often a result of attempted self-treatment for the symptoms of depression. Approximately two thirds of individuals who complete suicide have seen a physician within a month of their death.

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