Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/12904
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Drug suicide: a sex-equal cause of death in 16 European countries
Authors: Varnik, Airi
Sisask, Merike
Värnik, Peeter
Wu, Jing
Kolves, Kairi
Arensman, Ella
Maxwell, Margaret
Reisch, Thomas
Gusmao, Ricardo
Audenhove, Chantal van
Scheerder, Jeroen
van, der Feltz-Cornelis Christina M
Coffey, Claire
Kopp, Maria
Szekely, Andras
Roskar, Saska
Hegerl, Ulrich
Contact Email: margaret.maxwell@stir.ac.uk
Issue Date: 29-Jan-2011
Publisher: BioMed Central
Citation: Varnik A, Sisask M, Värnik P, Wu J, Kolves K, Arensman E, Maxwell M, Reisch T, Gusmao R, Audenhove Cv, Scheerder J, van der Feltz-Cornelis CM, Coffey C, Kopp M, Szekely A, Roskar S & Hegerl U (2011) Drug suicide: a sex-equal cause of death in 16 European countries, BMC Public Health, 11 (Article 61).
Abstract: Background: There is a lack of international research on suicide by drug overdose as a preventable suicide method. Sex- and age-specific rates of suicide by drug self-poisoning (ICD-10, X60-64) and the distribution of drug types used in 16 European countries were studied, and compared with other self-poisoning methods (X65-69) and intentional self-injury (X70-84). Methods: Data for 2000-04/05 were collected from national statistical offices. Age-adjusted suicide rates, and age and sex distributions, were calculated. Results: No pronounced sex differences in drug self-poisoning rates were found, either in the aggregate data (males 1.6 and females 1.5 per 100,000) or within individual countries. Among the 16 countries, the range (from some 0.3 in Portugal to 5.0 in Finland) was wide. 'Other and unspecified drugs' (X64) were recorded most frequently, with a range of 0.2-1.9, and accounted for more than 70% of deaths by drug overdose in France, Luxembourg, Portugal and Spain. Psychotropic drugs (X61) ranked second. The X63 category ('other drugs acting on the autonomic nervous system') was least frequently used. Finland showed low X64 and high X61 figures, Scotland had high levels of X62 ('narcotics and hallucinogens, not elsewhere classified') for both sexes, while England exceeded other countries in category X60. Risk was highest among the middle-aged everywhere except in Switzerland, where the elderly were most at risk. Conclusions: Suicide by drug overdose is preventable. Intentional self-poisoning with drugs kills as many males as females. The considerable differences in patterns of self-poisoning found in the various European countries are relevant to national efforts to improve diagnostics of suicide and appropriate specific prevention. The fact that vast majority of drug-overdose suicides came under the category X64 refers to the need of more detailed ICD coding system for overdose suicides is needed to permit better design of suicide-prevention strategies at national level.
Type: Journal Article
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/12904
DOI Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2458-11-61
Rights: © 2011 Värnik et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2458/11/61
Affiliation: Estonian-Swedish Mental Health and Suicidology Institute (ERSI)
Estonian-Swedish Mental Health and Suicidology Institute (ERSI)
Estonian-Swedish Mental Health and Suicidology Institute (ERSI)
Estonian-Swedish Mental Health and Suicidology Institute (ERSI)
Estonian-Swedish Mental Health and Suicidology Institute (ERSI)
University College Cork
NMAHP Research
University of Bern
New University of Lisbon
KU Leuven
Katholieke Universiteit, Leuven, Belgium
Trimbos Instituut
University College Cork
Semmelweis University Budapest
Semmelweis University Budapest
University of Primorska
University Leipzig

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
Maxwell_2011_Drug_suicide.pdf218.62 kBAdobe PDFView/Open


This item is protected by original copyright



Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact library@stir.ac.uk providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.