PURPOSE. The study aims to compare the current suicidal risk of mood disorder patients who had just attempted suicide, as compared with those who had not attempted suicide, admitted to an emergency department (ED), and then hospitalized in a psychiatric unit.
METHOD. One hundred sixty-one mood disorder patients admitted to the ED were studied. A total of 22.4% of the participants were admitted for a suicide attempt. Patients were assessed for psychopathology and diagnosis.
FINDINGS. Suicide attempters were nearly 12 times more likely to report ongoing suicidal ideation during the psychiatric evaluation in the ED than nonattempters. Men and women did not differ for current and previous suicide attempts or for ongoing suicidal ideation.
PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS. It is important to conduct a suicide risk assessment when individuals are admitted to an ED.