Korean J Psychosom Med.  2016 Jun;24(1):74-82. 10.0000/kjpm.2016.24.1.74.

Severity of Comorbidities among Suicidal Attempters Classified by the Forms of Psychiatric Follow-up

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, National Health Insurance Service Ilsan Hospital, Goyang, Korea. byungook@nhimc.or.kr
  • 2Department of Psychiatry and Institute of Behavioral Science in Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 3Department of Psychiatry, Gangnam Severance Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Suicide attempters have impaired decision making and are at high risk of reattempt. Therefore it is important to refer them to psychiatric treatment. Especially, People with medical comorbidity are at higher risk of suicidal attempt and mortality. The aim of this study was to investigate the characteristics of suicidal attempters and to analyze the influence of the medical comorbidity on decision to receive psychiatric treatment after visit to an emergency department.
One hundred and thirty two patients, who visited the emergency room of a general hospital in Gyeonggi-do between January, 2012 and December, 2012 were enrolled as the subjects of this study. After reviewing each subject's medical records retrospectively, demographic and clinical factors were analyzed.
Regardless of the engagement type, either via admission or outpatient clinic, the determinant factors of psychiatric treatment engagement were psychiatric diagnosis, employment status, previous psychiatric treatment history, and previous attempt history. Comparison of severity of medical comorbidity(Charlson Comorbidity Index) showed that suicide attempters who received psychiatric treatment via admission or refused the treatment tended to have higher level of medical comorbidity than who received psychiatric treatment via outpatient department.
Our findings showed that medical comorbidity of suicide attempters affected the decision to accept psychiatric treatment. All psychiatrists should evaluate the presence and the severity of medical comorbidity of the suicide attempters and consider implementing more intervention for the medically ill attempters who are willing to discharge against advice.


Suicidal behavior; Emergency room; Psychiatry; Consultation; Comorbidity
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