Hawton et al identified risk factors for suicide in schizophrenic patients. These can help to identify a patient who may benefit from interventions and monitoring. The authors are from Warneford Hospital, St. Andrew's Hospital (Northampton) and the Institute for Health Sciences in Oxford, England.


Patient selection: schizophrenia


Risk factors for suicide:

(1) history of depression

(2) history of previous suicide attempts

(3) substance abuse

(4) agitation or mental restlessness

(5) fear of mental disintegration

(6) poor adherence to therapy

(7) recent signficant loss

(8) absence of hallucinations



• Hallucinations are associated with reduced risk.


A patient with risk factors should be encouraged to be adherent with therapy and may benefit from more aggressive management after a significant loss.


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