Sex Differences in Developmental Trends of Suicide Ideation, Plans, and Attempts Among European American Adolescents

Longitudinal categorical data from the Family Transitions Project was used to investigate whether yearly prevalence rates of adolescent suicidal episodes follow different patterns by gender. The sample included 1,248 rural European Americans, ages 11-19. Multiple-group growth models revealed that peak levels of past-year ideation & plans occurred during mid-adolescence for girls, but slowly increased through […]

Frequency of Mental and Addictive Disorders Among 320 men and Women Entering the Iowa Prison System: use of the MINI-Plus

The Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview-Plus was used to assess the frequency of mental & addictive disorders among 320 randomly selected men & women newly committed to the general population of the Iowa prison system. More than 90% met criteria for a current or lifetime psychiatric disorder. 30% of the offenders were at risk for suicide. The […]

Parent-Child Relationships as Systems of Support or Risk for Adolescent Suicidality

This study examined a process model of predicting adolescent suicidality. Adolescent emotional distress was hypothesized to mediate the relationship between parent behaviours & subsequent adolescent suicidality. The parental behaviours studied included parental warmth & parental hostility. A sample of 451 families from rural Iowa participated in this longitudinal study, that included both observation & self-report […]

Age, Mortality and Chronic Schizophrenia

Mortality data are presented from a 0 to 10 year follow-up of 636 chronic schizophrenic patients. Comparisons were made with the general population of the State of Iowa using sex & age standardized mortality ratios (SMRs). Risk for mortality was found to be most pronounced among men younger than 40 & women younger than 70. […]

Gun Suicides in Iowa 1996-1998: the Alarming but Hidden Loss of Young Lives

This pamphlet is targeted towards lawmakers, medical personnel, & social workers interested in implementing public policies to address guns & suicide. Data on gun suicides in Iowa for the three-year period of 1996-1998 was obtained from the Iowa Department of Public Health. The data was analyzed to determine the gender of the victim, the age […]

The Relationship Between DST Results and Suicidal Behavior

This study assessed the relationship between dexamethasone suppression test results & suicidal ideation/behaviors. 423 mood disorder patients who were admitted to a tertiary care centre were administered the test from 1978 to 1981. The patients were subsequently followed up to determine death status using a record-linkage method. Results indicate that an abnormal dexamethasone suppression test […]

The Choice of Weapons in Firearm Suicides in Iowa

This study reports the types of firearms used in firearm suicides in Iowa and tests the hypothesis that the use of handguns, rifles, and shotguns in such suicides reflects the availability of these weapons. The percentage of firearm suicides involving handguns increased from 36.6% in 1980-1984 to 43.3% during 1990 & 1991. The data suggest […]

Farmers Strain to Hold the Line as Crisis Uproots Mental Health

Caught in the panic of rising interest rates, falling prices & anxious bankers, about 40% of Iowa farmers are expected to lose their farms. Suicide & violence are real threats for many of these proud farmers. Farm crisis outreach programs designed to educate, identify & treat those affected by the current hard times are described. […]

Injury Mortality Among Iowa Farmers, 1980-1988: Comparison of PMR and SMR Approaches

A study of death certificates of 127,544 white male farmers in Iowa (1980-88) found an increased proportional mortality ratio (PMR) of 1.26 for all injuries. This was a result of the increased PMR for at-work injuries of 3.77, as well as elevated PMRs for nonoccupational injuries such as suicide (1.20), motor vehicle crashes (1.23), & […]

An Iowa Farmer’s day of Death

On December 9, 1985, Dale Burr, a farmer in Hills, Iowa, killed his wife, his banker & a neighbour before killing himself. This story investigates the conditions that may have precipitated these events. The story was often portrayed as an outgrowth of the national farm crisis in the USA. However, Burr’s financial problems were no […]

Mortality in Schizophrenia – the Iowa Record-Linkage Study: a Comparison With General Population Mortality

Mortality data from 0-10 year follow-up of 688 schizophrenic patients were obtained through a record-linkage process & compared with that of the general population of Iowa. Risk of mortality was most pronounced during the first 2 years following hospital discharge. Mortality from suicide was significantly excessive for both male & female schizophrenics. Distribution of method […]

Suicide Among Elderly White men: Development of a Profile

Older white men have the highest suicide rate in the USA. They are less likely to communicate their intentions & to use violent & lethal means. Chronic sleep problems, pain, degenerative illness, or clinical depression may put these men at suicidal risk. Educational programs, outreach mental health programs, & enhanced consultation/coordination improve case findings & […]

Is Assisted Suicide Justifiable?

This article discusses the morality of assisted suicide by physicians. The author asserts that assisted suicide is justifiable under certain conditions. The doctor should have a thorough knowledge of the patient’s medical history, determine if the patient is suffering from depression, discuss alternatives in length, &, if the patient is ill, ensure that all medical […]

The Prediction of Suicide: Sensitivity, Specificity, and Predictive Value of a Multivariate Model Applied to Suicide Among 1906 Patients With Affective Disorders

An attempt was made to develop a statistical model that would predict suicide in 1906 Iowans with affective disorders admitted to a tertiary care hospital. Some of the risk factors identified using this approach were the number of prior attempts & suicidal ideation on admission. The model failed to identify any of the patients who […]

The Iowa Record-Linkage Experience

A list of admissions to a psychiatric hospital over 10 years (1972-81) was compared by computer with all Iowa death certificates for the same period. Each patient was assigned 1 psychiatric diagnosis from a hierarchical list of 10 categories. Ratios of observed to expected deaths, adjusted for age, sex & follow-up time, reveal relative risk […]

Arsenic Poisoning: Ongoing Diagnostic and Social Problem

Arsenic poisoning is a public health threat in the U.S. Dr. Fuortes defines the scope of the problem in this survey of hospital admissions for arsenic poisoning over a 15-year period. Admissions to 3 Eastern Iowa hosipitals for arsenic poisonings between 1970-1985 were reviewed & 19 cases of arsenic poisoning were identified. Six ingestions were […]

Suicide in Subtypes of Major Affective Disorder: a Comparison With General Population Suicide Mortality

Suicide risk was investigated in a 1970-1981 study of psychiatric patients with primary unipolar depression (N=705), secondary unipolar disorder (N=302), & bipolar affective disorder(N=586). Suicide rates among the study subjects were compared with the general population of Iowa. Increased risk was found in all pychiatric groups except female patients with BAD. 30 suicides occurred during […]

Excess Mortality Among Formerly Hospitalized Child Psychiatric Patients

This study investigated mortality in 881 male & 450 female formerly hospitalized child psychiatric patients in a 4 to 15 year follow up. Death from unnatural causes ocurred at a rate twice as high as expected based on age- & sex-matched comparisons with the general population of Iowa. Clinical variables associated with an excess rate […]

Effect of Psychosis on Suicide Risk in 1,593 With Unipolar and Bipolar Affective Disorders

The authors report suicide risk among 1,593 patients with major depression or bipolar disorder, 443 (27.8%) of whom were psychotic (260 bipolar & 183 unipolar). The subjects were followed for 0-14 years, & their suicide experience was compared with that of the state population. Eight (19.5%) of the 41 suicide victims were from the psychotic […]

An American Tragedy

This article discusses the events leading up to an Iowa farmer’s shooting of his wife & banker, & his subsequent suicide. Although these tragic events were described by the media as being the direct result of the farm crisis, the author suggests that his problems were less severe than those of many of his neighbours […]

The Iowa Record-Linkage Study: II. Excess Mortality among Patients with Organic Mental Disorders

In a 10-yr study of 281 male (mean age 47.4 yrs) & 262 female (51.0 yrs) patients with organic mental disorders, subjects of all ages were at risk for early death, with the exception of those over the age of 69 yrs. Risk was greatest in 1st 2 yrs of follow-up, & 93.1% of deaths […]

Excess Mortality Among Psychiatric Patients: The Iowa Record-Linkage Study

Of 5412 patients admitted to the university of Iowa Paychiatric Hospital between Jan. 01, 1972, & Dec. 31, 1981, 331 died during the follow-up period, significantly more than expected. The greatest risk was for females aged 30-39; those with a psychiatric history of organic mental disorders of schizophrenia. 99% of the excess deaths occurred within […]

Suicide Statistics of Dentists in Iowa, 1968 to 1980

A review of existing research & death investigations of dentists known to have committed suicide in the state of Iowa during the period 1968-1980 lead the authors to conclude that suicide rates for dentists are elevated over the age-sex rate of the general population. Rates appear to be higher for those entering the profession (24-44) […]