Journal of Public Health

, Volume 21, Issue 1, pp 79–86 | Cite as

Long-term mortality in patients hospitalized due to acute drug poisoning: 14-years follow-up study with controls

  • Janne Henrik LiisananttiEmail author
  • Pasi Ohtonen
  • Marja-Leena Kortelainen
  • Tero Ilmari Ala-Kokko
Original Article



Patients who experience deliberate self-harm (DSH) generally have poor long-term outcomes. the aim of the study was evaluate long-term mortality of patients hospitalized due to acute self poisoning and causes of deaths.


Patients admitted to Oulu University Hospital due to acute drug poisoning between 1985 and 2000 were followed until the end of 2009 using Finnish mortality registries. Mortality and causes of deaths were compared to sex and year of birth matched controls.


A total of 3,709 patients were included in the analysis, and 1,134 of them (30.6 %) had died by the end of 2009, while the mortality of the control population was 13.6 % (P < 0.0001). The median age at death was 54 (25th–75th pct 43–74) in contrast to 73 (25th–75th pct 57–82) among controls. The most common cause of death in the study population was cardiovascular disease, followed by poisoning and trauma and these were significantly more common in the study population. 364 (10.8 %) patients from the study population committed suicide; the total number of suicides in the control population was 170 (0.9 %, P < 0.0001).


The results of this study indicate that patients admitted to the hospital due to acute self-poisoning have poor long-term outcomes.


Causes of deaths Deliberate self-harm Drug poisoning Long-term mortality 



This study was funded by Finnish Government-based Oulu University EVO-grants.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Janne Henrik Liisanantti
    • 1
    • 4
    Email author
  • Pasi Ohtonen
    • 2
  • Marja-Leena Kortelainen
    • 3
  • Tero Ilmari Ala-Kokko
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Anaesthesiology, Division of Intensive Care MedicineOulu University HospitalOuluFinland
  2. 2.Department of Operative CareOulu University HospitalOuluFinland
  3. 3.Institute of Diagnostics, Department of Forensic MedicineOulu UniversityOuluFinland
  4. 4.Department of AnaesthesiologyOulu University HospitalOuluFinland

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