HealthDay (3/8, Reinberg) reports, “Suicides among US soldiers rose 80 percent from 2004 to 2008,” according to a study published online March 7 in the journal Injury Prevention. The “analysis of data from the US Army Behavioral Health Integrated Data Environment” also revealed that “as many as 40 percent of these suicides may have been linked to combat experience in Iraq, yet nearly a third of the soldiers who committed suicide saw no combat at all.”
“Just one ambulatory visit for a mental health disorder may warn that a soldier is at risk for suicide,” MedPage Today (3/8, Fiore) reports. “Those who sought such help were about four times more likely to commit suicide than those who had not made any mental health visits (RR 3.9, 95% CI 3.0 to 4.9), Michelle Canham-Chervak, PhD, of the Injury Prevention Program of the US Army Public Health Command, and colleagues.” Notably, “patients who were hospitalized with mental illness had more than a 15-fold higher risk of suicide than those not hospitalized (RR 15.5, 95% CI 11.2 to 21.5).”
— “U.S. Army Suicides Rising Sharply, Study Finds Service in Iraq and Afghanistan appears to be the cause of increasing mental-health problems,”Steven Reinberg , Health Day, March 7, 2012.