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A study of suicidal cases in medicolegal autopsy

Journal: Open Journal of Psychiatry & Allied Sciences (Vol.5, No. 1)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 62-68

Keywords : Epidemiology. Demography. Methods. Substance Abuse. Mental Disorders.;

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Background: Despite the development of suicide prevention programmes, greater recognition of depression, and advances in biological treatments for depression, the overall rate of suicide has not changed over the past several decades. The need for a comprehensive study or socioeconomic, aetiopathogenic, medicolegal, and psychological phenomenon thus can hardly be overemphasised today in any group or section of human population anywhere in the world. Material and methods: Material for the present study consisted of 100 fatal cases of suicide during the period of 1 August 2004 to 31 July 2005. The various epidemiological data i.e. age, sex, religion, occupation etc. as well as pertaining to the motives and methods used in suicide were gathered. Results: Out of 100 randomly selected cases of suicide, 45 were male and 55 were female. The adolescent female and young male adults were more prone to suicide. Housewife represented highest number. In maximum number of suicide victims, educational level was primary. Most of the cases were of rural origin. The maximum number was from lower income group. A higher incidence of suicide was found in the married group. Joint family represented the highest number. The large majority of cases committed suicide during midnight and early in the morning. In an overwhelming majority of cases, relatives of victims reported motive as unknown. In the current study, 62% committed suicide by hanging. A total of ten per cent of the cases gave a history of substance abuse, mostly of alcohol. Major mental disorder comprised of three per cent in males and five cent in females. A fairly good number of cases (seven per cent) had chronic physical illnesses. There was presence of an element of abetment with as many as nine cases. Conclusion: Knowledge of the epidemiology and demographics of suicide is essential to assessing the suicidal individual and their prevention.

Last modified: 2013-12-28 20:15:11