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Journal Article


O'Connor SS, Comtois KA, Atkins DC, Kerbrat AH. Behav. Ther. 2016; 48(1): 45-55.


(Copyright © 2016, Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, Publisher Elsevier Publishing)






While previous studies have examined motivational aspects of self-directed violence, few studies have included specific motivations in predictive models for future suicide attempts. The current study utilized a sample of 160 individuals treated in an acute emergency setting following a suicide attempt who completed an interview battery that included an assessment of functional aspects of the index suicide attempt. A follow-up interview was conducted at 6 months to ascertain subsequent suicide attempts. The functional domains of suicide attempts were labeled as emotion regulation, communication, perceived better alternative to living, and self-loathing. Above and beyond other known risk factors, including history and highest lethality of previous self-injury, suicide attempts that served a communication function (OR = 0.18, p =.02, CI = 0.04, 0.73) and higher ratings of clinical dysfunction (OR = 3.41, p =.05, CI = 1.02, 11.36) were associated with a significant reduction in likelihood to engage in a suicide attempt during the 6-month follow-up window. Including the perceived effectiveness of the index suicide attempt in getting one's needs met strengthened the overall model predicting a suicide attempt in the follow-up window, but was not an independent risk factor above and beyond other variables in the model (OR = 1.46, p =.08, CI = 0.96, 2.22). Assessment of functional aspects of suicide attempt is feasible and may improve formulation of risk in a population where typical risk factors for suicide are ubiquitous.

Language: en


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