Culture, Medicine, and Psychiatry

, Volume 42, Issue 4, pp 800–820 | Cite as

A Short-Term Population Model of the Suicide Risk: The Case of Spain

  • Elena De la Poza
  • Lucas Jódar
Original Paper


A relevant proportion of deaths by suicide have been attributed to other causes that produce the number of suicides remains hidden. The existence of a hidden number of cases is explained by the nature of the problem. Problems like this involve violence, and produce fear and social shame in victims’ families. The existence of violence, fear and social shame experienced by victims favours a considerable number of suicides, identified as accidents or natural deaths. This paper proposes a short time discrete compartmental mathematical model to measure the suicidal risk for the case of Spain. The compartment model classifies and quantifies the amount of the Spanish population within the age intervals (16, 78) by their degree of suicide risk and their changes over time. Intercompartmental transits are due to the combination of quantitative and qualitative factors. Results are computed and simulations are performed to analyze the sensitivity of the model under uncertain coefficients.


Suicide risk Compartment model Spain Economic stress Depression Drug abuse 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center of Economic Engineering (INECO)Universitat Politècnica de ValènciaValenciaSpain
  2. 2.Instituto Universitario de Matemática MultidisciplinarUniversitat Politècnica de ValènciaValenciaSpain

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