Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology

, Volume 48, Issue 10, pp 1621–1627

Risk and predictors of suicide and non-suicide mortality following non-fatal self-harm in Northern Taiwan

  • Vincent C. H. Chen
  • Jen-Yu Chou
  • Ti-Chen Hsieh
  • Hung-Jung Chang
  • Charles T. C. Lee
  • Michael Dewey
  • Robert Stewart
  • Happy K. L. Tan
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s00127-013-0680-4

Cite this article as:
Chen, V.C.H., Chou, JY., Hsieh, TC. et al. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol (2013) 48: 1621. doi:10.1007/s00127-013-0680-4

Abstract

Objective

To investigate the risk and predictors of suicide and non-suicide mortality after self-harm in a Taiwanese population.

Method

Between July 2006 and June 2008, 3,299 individuals who harmed themselves were recruited to a population-based self-harm register in Taoyuan County, Taiwan. They were followed until December 2008, with record linkage for date and cause of death in a national mortality database.

Results

In total, 115 individuals died, 52 through suicide. The risks of suicide and non-suicide mortality in the first year were 1.5 and 2.2 %, respectively, representing an approximately 75-fold and 5-fold age- and gender-standardized increase compared with the general population in Taiwan. Male gender, rural residence, more lethal methods of self-harm and self-cited stressors for the index self-harm episode (unemployment, and chronic somatic illness) were independent risk factors for suicide mortality. Male gender, older age, rural residence and more lethal methods of self-harm were also independent risk factors for non-suicide mortality. The association between of unemployment as a cited reason for self-harm and later suicide was strongest in men and in those aged more than 45 years.

Conclusions

Relatively high rates of suicide and non-suicide mortality were found following self-harm. Suicide prevention needs to take into account of risk factors for fatal repetition of self-harm.

Keywords

Suicide Mortality Self-harm Unemployment 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vincent C. H. Chen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jen-Yu Chou
    • 3
  • Ti-Chen Hsieh
    • 4
  • Hung-Jung Chang
    • 4
  • Charles T. C. Lee
    • 5
  • Michael Dewey
    • 6
  • Robert Stewart
    • 6
  • Happy K. L. Tan
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryChung Shan Medical University HospitalTaichungTaiwan
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatrySchool of Medicine, Chung Shan Medical UniversityTaichungTaiwan
  3. 3.The Graduate Institute of Humanities in MedicineTaipei Medical UniversityTaipeiTaiwan
  4. 4.Taoyuan Mental HospitalTaoyuanTaiwan
  5. 5.Department of Public HealthKaohsiung Medical UniversityKaohsiungTaiwan
  6. 6.Institute of PsychiatryKing’s College LondonLondonUK