Suicidal Ideation and Suicide Attempts in Middle-Aged Women Attending a Primary Care Center: A Cross-Sectional Study in Mexico

Cosme Alvarado-Esquivel


Background: Very little is known about suicide attempts in middle-aged women in Mexico. The aims of this study were to determine: 1) the prevalence of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts in middle-aged women in Durango City, Mexico; and 2) the suicide attempt prevalence association with the sociodemographic, clinical, and behavioral characteristics of the women studied.

Methods: Through a cross-sectional study, 395 middle-aged women were surveyed. Suicidal ideation, suicide attempt data, and the characteristics of the women were obtained with the aid of a questionnaire. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were used to determine the association between suicide attempts and the characteristics of women.

Results: Of the 395 women (mean age: 46.97 5.34 years) studied, 50 (12.7%) had suicide ideation, and 20 (5.1%) had suicide attempts. The number of suicide attempts among these 20 women varied from 1 to 10 times. The most frequent method used for suicide attempt was intake of medicaments (in 11 women). None of the sociodemographic characteristics was associated with suicide attempts. Women with suicide ideation, abdominal pain frequently, and reflexes impairment had a significantly higher frequency of suicide attempts than those without these characteristics. Logistic regression of behavioral variables showed that only the variable alcohol consumption was independently associated with suicide attempts (odds ratio = 2.82; 95% confidence interval: 1.01 - 7.84; P = 0.04).

Conclusions: Results suggest that suicidal ideation and suicide attempts are prevalent among women of middle-age attending a public primary care center in Durango City. This is the first report of an association between suicide attempts and reflexes impairment. Factors associated with suicide attempts found in this study may help in the design of preventive measures against suicide.

J Clin Med Res. 2018;10(9):693-699


Suicidal ideation; Suicide attempts; Prevalence; Women; Cross-sectional study

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