J Korean Neuropsychiatr Assoc.  2011 Jul;50(4):310-315.

A Study for the Progress after Psychiatric Intervention for Patients Who Visit the Emergency Room due to Suicidal Attempts

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, Inha University, Incheon, Korea. kce320@inha.ac.kr

Abstract


OBJECTIVES
This study aimed to examine the clinical characteristics of patients who attempted suicide and the effects of their admission to a psychiatric ward after suicide attempts.
METHODS
We enrolled 147 patients who had visited the emergency room of Inha University Hospital between January 2007 and December 2008. We reviewed their medical records and investigated demographic factors, clinical characteristics, and acute stressors. We compared the progress of patients who had been admitted to a psychiatric ward and the progress of patients who had not been admitted to a psychiatric ward, to investigate the effects of psychiatric admission.
RESULTS
In total, 73% of patients who attempted suicide were women with a mean age of 40.5 years. On the other hand, the mean age of the men who had attempted suicide was 60. In 40% of suicide attempts, patients visited the emergency room after drinking alcohol. The most common method of suicide was drug intoxication (82%). A quarter the of patients had a history of previous suicide attempts. The most common cause of suicide attempts was interpersonal conflict, including couple relationship problems, family problems, and peer group problems. But in men, economic problems and chronic illnesses are more important stressors. Many patients who visited the emergency room due to suicide attempts refused admission to a psychiatric ward because of poor insight, aversion to psychiatric wards, and economic problems. The follow-up rate of patients who were admitted to a psychiatric ward was 78%, and their average follow-up period was 286 days. On the other hand, the follow-up rate of patients who were not admitted to a psychiatric ward was 11% and their average follow-up period was 21 days.
CONCLUSION
This study implies that interpersonal conflict is a significant cause of suicide attempts for both genders. Though many patients and their families refuse admission to a psychiatric ward, admission to a psychiatric ward is very important because it can serve psychiatric treatments for patients.

Keyword

Suicidal attempt; Emergency department; Psychiatric consultation
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