ERIC Number: ED327800
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Aug
The Prevalence, Lethality and Intent of Suicide Attempts among Adolescents.
Andrews, Judy A.; Lewinsohn, Peter M.
Although suicide is the second leading cause of death among adolescents in the United States, little is known about the prevalence or characteristics of suicide attempts among adolescents. Data from 1,710 adolescents attending 9 high schools in 5 communities were examined to determine the prevalence of suicide attempts and the lethality and intent of these attempts. Each adolescent was interviewed with a form of the Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia for School-Age Children which combined the Epidemiologic version (K-SADS-E) and the Present Episode version (K-SADS-P). Approximately 6.8% of the adolescents had attempted suicide in their lifetime. A significantly greater proportion of girls (9.8%) as compared to boys (3.5%) had attempted suicide. For both males and females, there was a significantly higher rate of attempts among adolescents with a diagnosis of major depression, substance use disorder, or disruptive behavior disorder than among adolescents without such diagnoses. Of these attempts, 14% were rated as potentially lethal and 43% were considered intentional. An examination of the relationship between lifetime attempts and lifetime psychiatric disorders revealed that a large proportion of adolescents who attempted suicide had a history of a psychiatric disorder. The results also indicated that being female and being from a home with no male head of household were risk factors for a suicide attempt. (NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (98th, Boston, MA, August 10-14, 1990).