Risk factors for suicidal ideations in patients with bipolar disorder

Vanamoorthy Umamaheswari, Ajit Avasthi, Sandeep Grover
Bipolar Disorders 2014, 16 (6): 642-51

OBJECTIVE: To identify the risk factors for suicidal ideation in subjects with bipolar depression.

METHODS: One-hundred and thirty subjects diagnosed with bipolar depression were evaluated on the following scales: Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Beck Hopelessness Scale (BHS), Patient Health Questionnaire-15 (PHQ-15), Barrat's Impulsivity Scale (BIS), Irritability, Anxiety, and Depression (IDA) Scale, Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS), Buss-Durke Hostile Inventory (BDHI), and Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS).

RESULTS: Based on the BDI suicidal thoughts and wishes item (score of ≥ 1), the study sample was divided into those with and those without suicidal ideation. Compared to those without suicidal ideations, patients with bipolar depression with suicidal ideation had significantly higher scores on the BDI, YMRS, BPRS total score, IDA total score, PHQ-15, BHS total score, and most of the hostility subscales of the BHI. [corrected]. On binary logistic regression analysis, the odds ratio (OR) for [corrected] presence of suicidal ideations was more than one and was significant for the BHS [OR = 1.53, [corrected] 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.24-1.99], the IDA-irritability directed inwards (OR = 1.48, 95% CI: 1.03-2.13), and the total hostility score (OR = 1.10, 95% CI: 1.02-1.20). Other factors for which the OR was more than one but the difference was not statistically significant were: Hindu religion (OR = 3.13, 95% CI: 0.76-12.99), lifetime mean duration of depressive episodes (OR = 1.08, 95% CI: 0.74-1.57), past history of hospitalization (OR = 1.10, 95% CI: 0.24-6.16), any preceding life events (OR = 1.45, 95% CI: 0.28-7.52), subsyndromal manic symptoms (OR = 1.01, 95% CI:0.53-1.92), presence of psychotic symptoms (OR = 1.06, 95% CI: 0.92-1.22), and irritability directed outwards (OR = 1.14, 95% CI: 0.92-1.41). [corrected].

CONCLUSION: Among the various predictors of suicidal ideations, the severity of hopelessness, irritability directed inwards, and hostility are the most important risk factors for suicidal ideations in patients with bipolar disorder. [corrected]. Hence, patients with these risk factors should be closely monitored to prevent suicide attempts and completed suicides.

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