Biomed Pap Med Fac Univ Palacky Olomouc Czech Repub. 2010, 154(3):265-273 | 10.5507/bp.2010.041
Backround. Suicide is the eighth leading cause of death in adults and the second leading cause of death in the 15- to 24-year-old age group. Suicidal impulses and suicidal behavior result from emotionally unbearable feeling of mental suffering and cognitive narrowing that prevent resolution to experienced stress, that is, in a situation when personal coping mechanisms have failed. Suicide attempts are a frequent cause of hospital admissions, in particular to anesthesiology and resuscitation departments.
Risk factors: Women attempt suicide three times more often than men. Four times more men than women complete suicide. More than 90% of people who complete suicide are diagnosed with severe mental illness and 50% suffer from depression at the time of suicide. Assessment. Physicians should be aware of possible suicidal behavior in any patient with mental illness, especially if accompanied by depressive symptoms. The physician should approach the topic of suicide carefully and discreetly, only after a therapeutic relationship with the patient has been established. Management. Patient protection, usually in the setting of a closed psychiatric ward, is necessary if he or she has a clear plan and means to commit suicide. After the patient's safety is secured, treatment may be initiated. If the patient is treated on an outpatient basis, his/her condition must be carefully monitored.
Received: January 1, 2010; Accepted: April 27, 2010