AbstractBackground and Aims
Adolescents at clinical high risk (CHR) for psychosis, as defined by the presence of attenuated psychosis symptoms (APS), exhibit increased levels of suicidal ideation and behaviour. However, no research thus far has examined the link between basic self-disturbances (SDs), an established marker for CHR, and suicidality/self-harm in this population. The goal of this pilot study was to assess the association between SD, depression and suicidal ideation and behaviour among non-help-seeking adolescents from the community.Method
A total of 100 community-dwelling adolescents (age range: 13–16) were assessed using the Examination of Anomalous Self-experience, Prodromal Questionnaire, Structured Interview for Prodromal Syndromes, Mood and Anxiety Symptom Questionnaire and the Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia for School-Age Children (K-SADS). The K-SADS was used to derive a binary diagnosis of unipolar depression, as well as to measure suicidal ideation and behaviour and self-harm.Results
In a multiple regression analysis, SD accounted for variance in depressive symptoms and suicidality/self-harm over and above that accounted for by APS. Moreover, SD accounted for variance in suicidality/self-harm over and above that accounted for by depression symptoms.Conclusions
These pilot results suggest that SD might be a unique dimension of vulnerability to depression and suicidality/self-harm in adolescence. Also, they encourage assessment of SD as part of a suicide risk assessment, particularly in the context of risk for subsequent psychosis.