Age-related differences in suicidality between young people and older adults with depression: Data from a nationwide depression cohort study in Korea (the CRESCEND study)

Ho Jun Seo, Hoo Rim Song, Hyeon Woo Yim, Jung Bum Kim, Min-Soo Lee, Jae Min Kim, Tae Youn Jun

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6 Citations (Scopus)


This study compared young people and older adults with depression to identify differences in suicidality between these groups. A total of 1003 patients with moderate to severe depression (Hamilton Depression Rating Scale [HDRS] score ≥14) were recruited from a national sample of 18 hospitals. Of the patients included in this study, 103 (10.3%) were placed in the younger group (age <25 years) and 900 (89.7%) were placed in the older group (age ≥25 years). Suicide-related variables and predictive factors associated with significant suicidal ideation were compared between the two groups. Regardless of the severity of depression, subjects in the younger group were more likely than were those in the older group to report significant suicidal ideation (scores ≥6 on the Beck Scale for Suicide Ideation [SSI-B], 79.6 vs. 53.7%, respectively; p < 0.001), have had a suicide attempt at the current episode (4.9 vs. 1.6%, respectively; p = 0.037), and have a history of suicide attempts (43.7 vs. 19.4%, respectively; p < 0.001). Logistic regression models revealed that, in contrast to the predictive factors in the older group, subjects in the younger group were more affected by their history of suicide attempts (OR [95% CI]: 12.4, [1.5-99.1]; p = 0.018) and depressive episodes (OR [95% CI]: 13.0, [1.6-104.0]; p = 0.016). Also in contrast to the older group, an increase in HDRS score was not identified as a possible precipitating factor of significant suicidal ideation in younger subjects. The present findings demonstrate that suicidality in depressed young people was more severe than in older adults, but that suicidality was not correlated with the severity of depression. These data suggest that close attention should be paid to young people even in mild or moderate depression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-92
Number of pages8
JournalComprehensive Psychiatry
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Jan 1


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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