Year: 2020 Source: Crisis. (2020). 41(5), 367-374. SIEC No: 20200983

Background: Concerns exist regarding the perceived risks of conducting suicide-focused research among an acutely distressed population. Aims: The current study assessed changes in participant distress before and after participation in a suicide-focused research study conducted on a psychiatric inpatient unit. Method: Participants included 37 veterans who were receiving treatment on a psychiatric inpatient unit and completed a survey-based research study focused on suicide-related behaviors and experiences. Results: Participants reported no significant changes in self-reported distress. The majority of participants reported unchanged or decreased distress. Reviews of electronic medical records revealed no behavioral dysregulation and minimal use of as-needed medications or changes in mood following participation. Limitations: The study’s small sample size and veteran population may limit generalizability. Conclusion: Findings add to research conducted across a variety of settings (i.e., outpatient, online, laboratory), indicating that participating in suicide-focused research is not significantly associated with increased distress or suicide risk.