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Attempted suicide in west London, I. Rates across ethnic communities

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 September 1999

D. BHUGRA
Affiliation:
Institute of Psychiatry, London: and Department of Psychiatry, University of Southampton
M. DESAI
Affiliation:
Institute of Psychiatry, London: and Department of Psychiatry, University of Southampton
D. S. BALDWIN
Affiliation:
Institute of Psychiatry, London: and Department of Psychiatry, University of Southampton

Abstract

Background. Two previous studies from the United Kingdom have suggested that rates of attempted suicide in Asian women are higher than in the native population.

Method. Over a 1-year period we identified 434 patients presenting from one catchment area to four hospitals, after episodes of self-harm. These patients were assessed using the GHQ, CIS-R, and Life Events Inventory, and by collecting details of the attempt itself.

Results. Asian women had the highest overall rates ; 1·6 times those in White women and 2·5 times the rate among Asian men. The rates were lowest among older women. Among younger Asian women (less than 30 years) the rates were 2·5 times those of White women and seven times those of Asian men. The rates among black groups were lower than expected. Self-poisoning was the commonest method of self-harm.

Conclusions. Younger Asian women are vulnerable to increased rates of attempted self-harm and deserve to be studied further.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
© 1999 Cambridge University Press

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