The study presents a statistical analysis of suicidal attempts in children and youths at the Clinic of Psychiatry and Neurology Timisoara for Children in the period 2001 – 2005. The following parameters were used: the global number of cases, the assignment on groups of ages, the distribution regarding the pacients sexes, the modality of fulfilling the suicidal attempt, the phases of the suicidal behaviour, the number of attempts, the season’s periodicity. The result showed that the phenomenon occured especially in girls and adolescents over 16 years, that there were used less violent methods, the rate of afirmation and ideation before the suicidal act were low and that the highest incidence of attempts occured in the spring and fall months.
The problematic of suicide
The suicidal behavior is a complex social health problem, being one of the first 5-9 entities of general morbidity and the first 2-3 causes of mortality at young ages.
A main problem of the pediatric psychiatry is as well the lowering of the age at which the suicidal accident happens. The suicidal gesture reflects a crisis situation which assumes a promt intervention, therefor a global evaluation of people which present risks is needed.
OMS defines the suicide as an action trough which a person tries to selfdistroy herself physicaly, with a more or less autentical intention to lose her life. The suicidal atempt is the behaviour trough which a person tries to end her life, using active or passive methodes, but not always achieving her purpose. It is clearly a demand for help and a way of pulling the attention on the major existential problems of children and youth.
The studies goals
The study evaluated the pacients with suicidal attempts refering to:
- The global number of cases;
- The number of cases distributed on years
- The assignment on groups of ages (under 14 years, between 14 and 16 years, over 16 years);
- The distribution regarding on the pacients sexes;
- The modality of fulfilling the suicidal attempt (ingestion, venesection, hanging, other methods);
- The phases of the suicidal behaviour (ideation, afirmation, act);
- The number of attempts;
- The seasons periodicity;
Material and methodology
The material used is taken from the cases of the Neuro-Psychiatry Clinic for Children Timisoara, in the period 2001-2005, studying the clinical and personal files of the pacients in the ambulatory.
The methodology used to evaluate the suicidal ideation and the psihopathology uses the DSM-IV and ICD 10 criterias for the major depressive episode, the most feared factor for the suicidal behaviour.
Statistic analysis of the researched data
- The total number of attempts recorded during the 5 years was of 194 cases, presenting a yearly average of 38.8. There were 39 cases in each of the years 2001 and 2003,36 in 2004, 30 in 2005 and the highest incidence of this behaviour was of 50 cases in 2002.
The distribution regarding the pacients sexes
- Indicates a number of 150 cases of atempts in girls and 44 in boys
- The ratio was of 3 to 1 for girls.
The assignment on groups of ages
- At the group of age under 14 years there where 29 cases (14.95%).
- Between 14 and 16 years there where 72 cases (37.11%).
- At ages over 16 there were 93 atempts (47.93%).
The modality of fulfilling the suicidal attempt
- There where 164 (84.53%) attempts trough ingestion of toxic substances and drugs, 17 (8.76%) trough venesection, 7 (3.64%) trough hanging and 6 (3.06%) trough different other methods.
The phases of the suicidal behaviour
- Only 11.34% (22 pacients) had ideation, 5.67% (11 pacients) said they wanted to die befor the act and most of them went directly to the attempt without preliminary simptomathology, 82.98% (161) pacients.
The number of attempts
- There where 148 cases (76.28), with one attempt, fulfilled trough ingestion.
- With 2 attempts there where 31 pacients (15.97%);
- With 3 attempts there where 11 pacients (5.67%);
- With more than 3 attempts there where 4 pacients, who used as a main method of selfinjury the ingestion as well.
The seasons periodicity
- The average, during the 5 years, was kept, except the year 2002 when there could have been an episodic epidemics.
- There is a higher occurnes of attempts in girls rather than boys, comparing to the accomplished suicide, where the rate is swiched.
- The most affected group is the one over 16 years.
- There is a higher rate of using methods with a smaller chance of succeeding than the accomplished suicide where there are used more violent methods.
- The phases of the suicidal behaviour show a more often attitude of directly fulfilling the act, rather then with an existing ideation or afirmation before.
- The recidive of the behaviour is found at 22.72% of the pacients.
- The maximal incidence was recorded in spring and autumn, probably because of the periods of school evaluation.
The importance of the studies of the NPI Clinic Timisoara, in time, results from the statistic and compartive evaluation of the suicidal behaviour from 1981 to 2005 on periods of 5 years. There has been a higher rate of incidence of the phenomen with the progression of the years.
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