[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
March 1956

A Psychiatric Study of Attempted Suicide in Persons Over Sixty Years of Age

Author Affiliations

St. Louis

From the Department of Psychiatry and Neurology, Washington University School of Medicine, and the St. Louis City Hospital (Malcolm A. Bliss Psychopathic Institute).

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1956;75(3):275-284. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1956.02330210055006

During the course of a study of attempted suicide, it became evident to us that there were many differences between younger and older patients who have attempted suicide. The work reported here was undertaken to investigate in greater detail the differences between these two groups and to study the characteristics of suicide attempts in persons in the older age group.

Special features of suicide attempts in the older persons will be described in this report. These features are important in the diagnosis and practical management of these patients, especially in preventing a subsequently successful suicide. Additional evidence that there are special features in the suicide attempts of older people will be supplied by comparing data from this study with a similar one from the United Kingdom.1

METHOD OF STUDY  The present report is part of a larger study of attempted suicide.2 In the larger study, 109 patients who