Year: 2023 Source: Crisis. (2016). 37(3), 224–231. DOI: 10.1027/0227-5910/a000372 SIEC No: 20231524
Background: The life time risk of suicide among patients with long term psychosis is 5-15%. Suicide prevention in this group is a major clinical challenge. Aims: To capture specific characteristics of suicidal communication and critical events preceding suicide in patients with psychosis. Methods: Medical records were examined and a life event inventory applied to a one-year cohort of 21 cases of suicide in the clinical group in Stockholm county. Results: In most cases direct or indirect verbal communication of suicidal thoughts were documented before the suicide. Three months preceeding death, 20 of the 21 subjects had described one or more negative critical experiences, typically physical illness, loss of contact with an important other, loss of "home", and intolerable side effects of medication. In most cases the suicide appeared to be the culmination of prolonged suffering and suicidal deliberations. Conclusions: Suicide prevention among patients with psychosis requires sensitivity, active listening, and responsiveness on the part of the care person to the patient's explicit suicidal communication and perceptions of care-related or other incidents or interactions, even when conveyed in an odd manner or with little emotion. To prevent suicide, attentive and long-term planning in collaboration with the patient is essential.