Suicide and violence in patients with major psychiatric disorders

Menahem Krakowski, Pal Czobor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)


The relationship between violence directed at the self and violence directed at others has intrigued psychiatrists for several decades. The goal of this study was to examine the relationship between suicide and violence against others in patients with major psychiatric disorders and to compare psychiatric symptoms associated with suicide in violent and non-violent patients. Subjects included physically assaultive psychiatric inpatients and a non-violent comparison group. Physical and verbal assaults were recorded prospectively for 4 weeks. History of suicide attempts was obtained through chart review and patient interviews. The Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale was administered at the end of the 4 weeks by raters who were blind to both suicidal and violent behavior. The suicide attempters did not differ from the non-attempters on any measure of violent behavior or hostility. Suicide attempts were not accompanied by different symptoms in violent and non-violent patients; however, violence and suicide attempts were accompanied by dissimilar psychiatric symptoms. The physically assaultive patients presented with more severe positive psychotic symptoms than the non-assaultive patients. The suicide attempters, on the other hand, did not differ from non-attempters on psychotic symptoms, but presented with more severe depression and anxiety. The relationship between these symptoms and suicide attempts was note-worthy in its temporal stability, as most of the patients had attempted suicide many years prior to this study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233-238
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Psychiatric Practice
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2004



  • Depressive symptoms
  • Major mental disorders
  • Suicide
  • Suicide attempts
  • Violence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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