Prognosis and Psychosocial Outcomes of Attempted Suicide by Early Adolescence: A 6-Year Follow-Up of School Students Into Early Adulthood

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Abstract

Adulthood psychiatric and psychosocial outcomes of early adolescence suicidal acts were studied. A representative sample of school adolescents (T1, mean age, 13.7 years; n = 2464; 50.8% female; 88.3% participation) was followed up a year later with the same questionnaire (T2). High scorers of depression were matched with low or moderate scorers and interviewed using the Kiddie–Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia–Present and Lifetime version (mean age, 14.9 years; n = 345; 94% participation). They were reassessed after 5 years (T3, mean age, 20.0 years; n = 242; 73% participation). Those who attempted suicide before the age of 14 years and repeated suicidal acts between ages 14 and 15 years had worser prognostic profiles than incident cases between ages 14 and 15 years. Male attempters had better psychiatric prognosis than female attempters. Attempters were more likely to have contacted child protection services but not mental health services. Clinicians need to be aware of long-term pervasive outcomes of adolescent suicidality.

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