Research Reports - Prevalence of suicidal behaviour following traumatic brain injury

Brain Inj. 2016 Aug 19:1-8. [Epub ahead of print]

Fisher LB(1,)(2), Pedrelli P(1,)(2), Iverson GL(3,)(4), Bergquist TF(5),
Bombardier CH(6), Hammond FM(7,)(8), Hart T(9), Ketchum JM(10), Giacino
J(1,)(3,)(11), Zafonte R(3,)(4,)(12,)(13).

OBJECTIVE: This study utilized the Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems (TBIMS)
National Database to examine the prevalence of depression and suicidal behaviour
in a large cohort of patients who sustained moderate-to-severe TBI.
METHOD: Participants presented to a TBIMS acute care hospital within 72 hours of
injury and received acute care and comprehensive rehabilitation in a TBIMS
designated brain injury inpatient rehabilitation programme. Depression and
suicidal ideation were measured with the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9).
Self-reported suicide attempts during the past year were recorded at each
follow-up examination, at 1, 2, 3, 10, 15 and 20 years post-injury.
RESULTS: Throughout the 20 years of follow-up, rates of depression ranged from
24.8-28.1%, suicidal ideation ranged from 7.0-10.1% and suicide attempts (past
year) ranged from 0.8-1.7%. Participants who endorsed depression and/or suicidal
behaviour at year 1 demonstrated consistently elevated rates of depression and
suicidal behaviour 5 years after TBI.
CONCLUSION: Compared to the general population, individuals with TBI are at
greater risk for depression and suicidal behaviour many years after TBI. The
significant psychiatric symptoms evidenced by individuals with TBI highlight the
need for routine screening and mental health treatment in this population. 

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