Recognizing Suicide Risk Factors in Primary and Psychiatric Care

Larry Culpepper, MD, MPH


October 25, 2010

In This Article

Suicidality and Suicide in Primary Care: Introduction

In those with major depression, the risk for suicide is increased 20-fold compared with the general population.[1] A history of major depression is present in about 60% of those who complete suicides. An estimated 8% of those with major depression attempt suicide at some time during their lifetime. This rate is increased in those with comorbid anxiety disorders (eg, 25% with comorbid panic disorder and 38% in those with comorbid posttraumatic stress syndrome disorder).[2] About 31,000 people in the United States and 1 million worldwide die by suicide each year, and 650,000 people in the United States are treated emergently following a suicide attempt.[3]


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