Suicide risk assessment is an important part of the psychiatric assessment in the ED. One must recognize that there are two epidemiologically different populations: the suicide attempters and suicide completers. Overall, women are 2-3 times more likely than men to attempt suicide but elderly males, who live alone are more likely to complete suicide. The majority of suicide attempts are by overdosing on prescription and non-prescription medications. One must pay special heed to a previous failed attempt by violent means: jumping, hanging, gun host, as they place the patient at high risk of future attempts.
Acknowledgements: Alexandra Stefan MD (Author), Paula Cleiman MD (Peer Reviewer)