Saturday 13 July 2019

"Suicidal spectrum behaviors" and ADHD meta-analysed

"Awareness of the association between ADHD [attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder] and SSBs [suicidal spectrum behaviors] should contribute to more effectively prevent SSBs."

That was the conclusion reached in the study published by Mathilde Septier and colleagues [1] and the results of their "first meta-analysis on the association between ADHD and SSBs taking possible confounders into account." Their systematic review and meta-analysis was preregistered (see here) so we knew it would be coming.

Starting with nearly 3000 references, the available data was whittled down to just over 50 studies. The data were analysed and boiled down to reveal "a significant association between ADHD and suicidal attempts..., suicidal ideations..., suicidal plans..., and completed suicide."

What's more to say? Well such results although stark are not completely unexpected given what has already been discussed on this blog on this topic (see here and see here and see here). They serve to confirm that a diagnosis of ADHD (or even the presentation of subclinical ADHD symptoms?) should really set in motion some preferential screening for suicidal spectrum behaviours and appropriate support offered as and when detected. Minus any sweeping generalisations, such results also invite further inquiry into how certain intervention options indicated for ADHD *might* also affect risk of suicidality in the context of ADHD (see here).

If you need someone to talk to, there are organisations out there...


[1] Septier M. et al. Association between suicidal spectrum behaviors and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2019 May 23. pii: S0149-7634(18)30941-2.


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