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Epidemiology and temporal trend of suicide mortality in the elderly in Jiading, Shanghai, 2003–2013: a descriptive, observational study
  1. Yueqin Shao1,
  2. Chenghua Zhu2,
  3. Yiying Zhang1,
  4. Hongjie Yu1,
  5. Hui Peng1,
  6. Yaqing Jin1,
  7. Guozheng Shi1,
  8. Na Wang2,
  9. Zheng Chen1,
  10. Yue Chen3,
  11. Qingwu Jiang2
  1. 1Jiading District Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Shanghai, China
  2. 2Key Laboratory of Public Health Safety of Ministry of Education, School of Public Health, Fudan University, Shanghai, China
  3. 3Faculty of Medicine, School of Epidemiology, Public Health, and Preventive Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  1. Correspondence to Dr Na Wang; na.wang{at}fudan.edu.cn

Abstract

Objectives To investigate and describe the epidemiological characteristics of suicide in the elderly in Jiading, Shanghai, for the period 2003–2013.

Design Retrospective, observational, epidemiological study using routinely collected data.

Setting Jiading District, Shanghai.

Methods Suicide data were retrieved from the Shanghai Vital Registry database for the period 2003–2013. Crude and age-standardised mortality rates were calculated for various groups according to sex and age. Joinpoint regression was performed to estimate the percentage change (PC) and annual percentage change (APC) for suicide mortality.

Result A total of 956 deaths due to suicide occurred among people aged ≥65 years during the study period, accounting for 76.7% (956/1247) of all suicide decedents. Among the 956 people with suicide deaths, 88.7% (848/956) had a history of a psychiatric condition. The age-standardised mortality rates for suicide without and with a psychotic history in people aged ≥65 years were much higher than those for people aged <65 years in both genders. Suicide mortality in the elderly showed a declining trend, with a PC of −51.5% for men and −47.5% for women. The APC was −29.1 in 2003–2005, 4.6 in 2005–2008 and −9.7 in 2008–2013 for aged men, and −12.2 in 2003–2006 and −5.2 in 2006–2013 for aged women, respectively. Women living in Jiading had a higher risk of suicide death than men, especially among the elderly. The mortality rate for suicide increased with age in the elderly, and was more marked for those with a psychiatric history than for those without.

Conclusions Suicide mortality declined in Jiading during the study period 2003–2013 overall, but remained high in the elderly, especially those with a psychiatric history.

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