A meta-analytic review of the association between agitation and suicide attempts.
Rogers, M., Ringer, F., & Joiner, T.
Agitation has been implicated as an acute risk factor for suicidal behavior, yet the literature to date has not been consolidated to better understand this relationship. We conducted a meta-analysis of the association between agitation and suicidal behavior to synthesize the existing literature (k = 13 studies) and point out future directions for research. Results indicated that the association between agitation and suicidal behavior is moderate (Hedge’s g = 0.40, p = 0.007, 95% CI [0.08, 0.72]). Follow-up meta-regressions revealed that age, gender, and year of publication were not significant moderators of the magnitude of this relationship. However, there was evidence of publication bias, as shown by a funnel plot and Egger’s test. These findings suggest the importance of future research that examines the nature of the association between agitation and suicidal behavior longitudinally and with novel research designs, as implications for clinical practice and suicide risk assessment may be substantial.
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