Prevalence and Correlates of Past 12-Month Suicide Attempt Among Adults With Past-Year Suicidal Ideation in the United States




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Objective: To examine the prevalence and correlates of attempting suicide in the past 12 months among adults with past-year suicidal ideation in the United States.

Method: Data were from 229,600 persons aged 18 years or older who participated in the 2008–2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Among them, 12,300 reported having past-year suicidal ideation, and over 2,000 of those reported attempting suicide within the past 12 months prior to survey interview. Descriptive analyses and pooled and stratified (by suicide plan and major depressive episode [MDE]) multivariate logistic regression models were applied. Major depressive episode was based on assessments of individual diagnostic criteria from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV).

Results: Among persons aged 18 years or older in the United States, 3.8% reported having suicidal ideation in the past 12 months. Among past-year suicidal ideators, 13.2% attempted suicide in the past 12 months. The prevalence of past 12-month suicide attempt among past-year ideators with MDE was higher than among those without MDE (14.1% vs 12.0%). Past 12-month suicide attempt was more common among ideators with a suicide plan than among ideators without a plan (37.0% vs 3.7%). However, the prevalence of suicide attempt was higher among ideators with a plan but without MDE than among ideators with a plan and MDE (42.1% vs 32.9%). Compared with ideators without a plan, ideators with a plan had a higher (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = 2.2; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.47–3.45) suicide attempt risk among those without MDE (AOR = 22.4; 95% CI,16.55–30.27) than among those with MDE (AOR = 10.7; 95% CI, 7.91–14.49).

Conclusions: Among adult suicidal ideators, factors associated with their progression from ideation to suicide attempt may vary by their suicide plan and major depression status. Focusing attention on high-risk subgroups may be warranted.

J Clin Psychiatry 2015;76(3):295–302