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Letter to the Editor

The ABCs of Suicide

Oliver Freudenreich, MD

Published: September 15, 2005

Article Abstract

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Sir: One of psychiatry’s emergencies is the evaluation ofa patient brought to the emergency room after a suicide attempt.To collect all relevant clinical information in this scenario,I have used a mnemonic that is modeled after the ABCsof cardiopulmonary resuscitation (A—Airway, B—Breathing,C—Circulation). The alphabet is easily recalled even under thebusiest of circumstances.

The ABCs of suicide is informed by the need for a patientspecificformulation using Mann and colleagues’ stressdiathesismodel of suicidal behavior1.

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