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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Suicide Attempts During Heavy Drinking Episodes Among Individuals Entering Alcohol Treatment in Warsaw, Poland

Acute alcohol intoxication itself may act as a trigger for suicidal thoughts and attempts among individuals at risk and may influence the potential lethality of the suicide attempt. This study in alcohol-dependent patients compared the correlates of suicide attempts during a heavy drinking episode with those of suicide attempts during relative sobriety.

In two outpatient and two residential alcohol treatment programs in Warsaw, Poland, 113 patients who reported a suicide attempt during their lifetime were interviewed. The analyses focused on the patients' most serious suicide attempts and on whether these occurred during a heavy drinking episode.

Over two-thirds of the patients reported that their most serious suicide attempt occurred during a period of heavy drinking. A multivariable logistic model indicated that the following factors significantly distinguished those patients whose most serious suicide attempt occurred during a heavy drinking episode: male gender, younger current age, greater severity of alcohol dependence and the attempt being unplanned.

Among the patients in treatment for alcohol dependence who made a suicide attempt, the most serious attempt was likely to have been unplanned and committed by men when it occurred during a heavy drinking episode.

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