Year: 2021 Source: The American Journal of Emergency Medicine. (2020), 38(9), 1743-1747. SIEC No: 20210033

The emergency department (ED) is one of the first gateways when suicide attempt patients seek health care services. The purpose of this study was to analyze the hypothesis that people who received emergency psychiatric services in previous suicide attempts will have a lower mortality rate in current ED visits owing to subsequent suicide attempts.
This retrospective study included patients who visited six EDs, and participated in the injury surveillance and in-depth suicide surveillance for 10 years, from January 2008 to December 2017. The study subjects were adult patients 18 years or older who visited EDs due to suicide attempts. The main explanatory variable is whether psychiatric treatment was provided in previous suicide attempts. The main outcome variable was suicide related mortality.
The study included 2144 suicide attempt patients with a previous history of suicide attempts. Among these, 1335 patients (62.2%) had received psychiatric treatment in previous suicide attempts. Mortality was significantly different between the psychiatric consultation group (n = 33, 2.5%) and non-consultation group (n = 47, 5.8%) (P < 0.01). In multivariate logistic regression analysis, previous psychiatric consultation showed a significant association with low mortality (adjusted OR 0.41; 95% CI [0.23–0.72]) and selecting non-fatal suicide methods (adjusted OR 0.47; 95% CI [0.36–0.61]).
Patients who received psychiatric consultation in previous suicide attempts had a lower suicide-related mortality in current ED visits as compared to patients who did not, and this may have been related to choosing non-fatal suicide methods.