Document Detail

The burden of suicide in Wisconsin's older adult population.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19437934     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
INTRODUCTION: Suicide rates in the older adult population are disproportionately high, yet most studies focus on youth suicide. This study characterized risk factors for elder suicide in Wisconsin. METHODS: Wisconsin residents aged > or =65 who committed suicide from 2001-2006 were identified using the Violent Injury Reporting System (VIRS; 2001-2003) and the Wisconsin Violent Death Reporting System (WVDRS; 2004-2006). Multivariate regression was used to determine the risk of suicide and to adjust crude rates. Suicide circumstances and methods were also examined. RESULTS: From 2001-2006, the rate of suicide of those > or =65 was 12.4 per 100,000 per year, lower than the national average of 14.7 per 100,000. Multivariate analysis in Caucasians found that compared to married individuals, those widowed, divorced, or never married had a 2.5- to nearly 5-fold increase in risk of suicide death. Males aged 65-74 had almost a 7-fold increased risk compared to females of that age, and the risk increased for males as they aged, compared to females 65-74 years old. Almost 40% of the cases had a medical examiner or coroner report that the victim had a diagnosed mental illness. Forty-two percent of victims had documented alcohol toxicology screening; of these, 16% were positive for alcohol at the time of death. The most common method of suicide was firearm use (66.9%). DISCUSSION: Being single, male, and a male advancing in age are risk factors of suicide in the elderly. Health care workers, community advocates, and public health workers should be cognizant of these risk factors to facilitate early recognition and intervention.
Brendan T Wanta; Amy E Schlotthauer; Clare E Guse; Stephen W Hargarten
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  WMJ : official publication of the State Medical Society of Wisconsin     Volume:  108     ISSN:  1098-1861     ISO Abbreviation:  WMJ     Publication Date:  2009 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2009-05-14     Completed Date:  2009-06-18     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9716054     Medline TA:  WMJ     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  87-93     Citation Subset:  IM    
Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee 53226, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Aged, 80 and over
Regression Analysis
Risk Factors
Suicide / statistics & numerical data*
Wisconsin / epidemiology
Grant Support

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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