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Vol. 40, No. 5, 2007
Issue release date: August 2007
Section title: Original Paper
Psychopathology 2007;40:269–277
(DOI:10.1159/000104742)

Is the Bipolar Spectrum the Psychopathological Substrate of Suicidality in Heroin Addicts?

Maremmani I. · Pani P.P. · Canoniero S. · Pacini M. · Perugi G. · Rihmer Z. · Akiskal H.S.
aSanta Chiara University Hospital, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pisa, and bInstitute of Behavioural Sciences G. De Lisio, Pisa, cAU-CNS, Pietrasanta, dSerT AUSL 8, Cagliari, and eSerT AUSL 5, La Spezia, Italy; fNational Institute for Psychiatry and Neurology, Budapest, Hungary; gInternational Mood Center, University of California and Veterans Administration Hospital, San Diego, Calif., USA

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Original Paper

Accepted: 6/2/2006
Published online: 6/28/2007

Number of Print Pages: 9
Number of Figures: 0
Number of Tables: 4

ISSN: 0254-4962 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-033X (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/PSP

Abstract

Background: To describe the prevalence and the risk factors of suicidal ideation in a cohort of Italian opioid addicts presenting for treatment. Method: Systematic cross-sectional clinical data on suicidal ideation, socio-demographic variables, psychiatric status, social adjustment, status and history of addiction in 616 patients were gathered. Results: Suicidal thoughts during the past week were reported by 29.1%. Suicidal thoughts were more frequent in patients with bipolar spectrum diagnoses (OR = 1.42) and in patients with depressive and aggressive symptoms (multiple R = 0.47). The odds of having suicidal thoughts were also higher for subjects receiving public welfare benefits (OR = 1.69), unemployed patients (OR = 1.37), those with early onset of heroin dependence (OR = 1.36), living alone (OR = 1.33), and experiencing problems in organizing social contacts and leisure time (OR = 1.28). Conclusion: Current suicidal ideation was a common feature of patients with opioid addiction. Depression and hostility as part of the bipolar spectrum – in the context of early-onset drug dependence, work and social/leisure problems – appear independently associated with suicidal ideation. Given the elevated rates of completed suicide in heroin addiction, these data have implications for preventing suicide in patients with this type of addiction. Prospective data are needed to further address this important clinical and public health agenda.


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Original Paper

Accepted: 6/2/2006
Published online: 6/28/2007

Number of Print Pages: 9
Number of Figures: 0
Number of Tables: 4

ISSN: 0254-4962 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-033X (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/PSP


Copyright / Drug Dosage

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Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in goverment regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
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