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Risk for Suicidal Thoughts and Behavior after Childhood Sexual Abuse in Women and Men

Authors

  • Saaniya Bedi BS,

    1. SaaniyaBedi, Elliot C. Nelson, Michael T. Lynskey, Vivia V. McCutcheon, Andrew C. Heath, Pamela A.F. Madden, Department of Psychiatry, Midwest Alcoholism Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO, USA; Nicholas G. Martin, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
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  • Elliot C. Nelson MD,

    1. SaaniyaBedi, Elliot C. Nelson, Michael T. Lynskey, Vivia V. McCutcheon, Andrew C. Heath, Pamela A.F. Madden, Department of Psychiatry, Midwest Alcoholism Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO, USA; Nicholas G. Martin, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
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  • Michael T. Lynskey PhD,

    1. SaaniyaBedi, Elliot C. Nelson, Michael T. Lynskey, Vivia V. McCutcheon, Andrew C. Heath, Pamela A.F. Madden, Department of Psychiatry, Midwest Alcoholism Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO, USA; Nicholas G. Martin, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
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  • Vivia V. Mc Cutcheon PhD,

    1. SaaniyaBedi, Elliot C. Nelson, Michael T. Lynskey, Vivia V. McCutcheon, Andrew C. Heath, Pamela A.F. Madden, Department of Psychiatry, Midwest Alcoholism Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO, USA; Nicholas G. Martin, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
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  • Andrew C. Heath DPhil,

    1. SaaniyaBedi, Elliot C. Nelson, Michael T. Lynskey, Vivia V. McCutcheon, Andrew C. Heath, Pamela A.F. Madden, Department of Psychiatry, Midwest Alcoholism Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO, USA; Nicholas G. Martin, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
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  • Pamela A.F. Madden PhD,

    1. SaaniyaBedi, Elliot C. Nelson, Michael T. Lynskey, Vivia V. McCutcheon, Andrew C. Heath, Pamela A.F. Madden, Department of Psychiatry, Midwest Alcoholism Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO, USA; Nicholas G. Martin, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
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  • Nicholas G. Martin PhD

    1. SaaniyaBedi, Elliot C. Nelson, Michael T. Lynskey, Vivia V. McCutcheon, Andrew C. Heath, Pamela A.F. Madden, Department of Psychiatry, Midwest Alcoholism Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO, USA; Nicholas G. Martin, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
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Address correspondence to Elliot C. Nelson, Department of Psychiatry, Midwest Alcoholism Research Center, Washington University School of Medicine, 4560 Clayton Avenue, St. Louis, MO 63110; E-mail: nelsone@wustl.edu

Abstract

Earlier studies have found an elevated risk for psychopathology and suicidal behavior associated with childhood sexual abuse (CSA); however, the degree to which risk is mediated by depression and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in women and men remains unclear. We examined these issues in data from a family study of childhood maltreatment (= 2,559). We found significant CSA-associated risk for depression, PTSD, and suicidal behavior for women and men. In survival analyses controlling for these disorders, we observed persistent but somewhat reduced CSA-associated risk for suicidal ideation and suicide attempt. Our findings suggest that these disorders partially mediate CSA-associated risk.

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