Risk Factors for Suicide in Epilepsy Patients

Hrvoje Hećimović; Zvonimir Popović


Future Neurology. 2014;9(5):553-561. 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Suicidal behavior is not uncommon in epilepsy patients. Risk factors for suicidal ideation are associated with social and vocational disturbances, such as low economic status, lack of social support and unemployment and psychiatric comorbidity. In epilepsy patients, interictal dysphoric disorder presents a depressive mood that may be associated with episodic suicidal ideation. Suicide may occur among patients with very severe epilepsy, but also in patients that recently achieved a complete seizure freedom. Recent research suggests that almost a third of epilepsy patients that endorsed suicidal ideation were euthymic or had only very mild depressive symptoms. People with epilepsy should be specifically asked about their psychiatric problems and potential suicidal ideation. Neurobiology of suicidal behavior in epilepsy patients is still unclear.