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Increased suicide attempt risk in people with epilepsy in the presence of concurrent psychogenic nonepileptic seizures

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)895-901
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry
Volume93
Issue number8
DOIs
Accepted/In press20 May 2022
Published1 Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information: We would like to acknowledge Iman Jasani for contributing to data collection and for coreviewing text snippets to test the performance of the NLP Suicidal Ideation app in our sample. We would like to acknowledge the Bergqvist Charitable Trust and the Psychiatry Research Trust for their financial support. This study represents independent research partly funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College London. We would like to acknowledge the Office for National Statistics (ONS) as the provider of the Mortality data; those who carried out the original collection and analysis of the data bear no responsibility for their further analysis or interpretation. Professor Young’s independent research is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College London. Funding Information: IF, JH and PS: none to declare. Allan H. Young: Employed by King’s College London; Honorary Consultant SLaM (NHS UK). Deputy Editor, BJPsych Open. Paid lectures and advisory boards for the following companies with drugs used in affective and related disorders: Astrazeneca, Eli Lilly, Lundbeck, Sunovion, Servier, Livanova, Janssen, Allegan, Bionomics, Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma, COMPASS, Sage, Novartis. Consultant to Johnson & Johnson. Consultant to Livanova. Received honoraria for attending advisory boards and presenting talks at meetings organised by LivaNova. Principal Investigator in the Restore-Life VNS registry study funded by LivaNova. Principal investigator on ESKETINTRD3004: ‘An Open-label, Long-term, Safety and Efficacy Study of Intranasal Esketamine in Treatment-resistant Depression.’ Principal Investigator on ‘The Effects of Psilocybin on Cognitive Function in Healthy Participants’. Principal investigator on ‘The Safety and Efficacy of Psilocybin in Participants with Treatment-Resistant Depression (P-TRD)’. UK Chief Investigator for Novartis MDD study MIJ821A12201. Grant funding (past and present): NIMH (USA); CIHR (Canada); NARSAD (USA); Stanley Medical Research Institute (USA); MRC (UK); Wellcome Trust (UK); Royal College of Physicians (Edin); BMA (UK); UBC-VGH Foundation (Canada); WEDC (Canada); CCS Depression Research Fund (Canada); MSFHR (Canada); NIHR (UK). Janssen (UK). No shareholdings in pharmaceutical companies. Funding Information: This work was supported by the Bergqvist Charitable Trust through the Psychiatry Research Trust as a PhD scholarship to Irene Faiman. This study represents independent research partly funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College London. Professor Young’s independent research is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College London. The funders were not involved in any aspects of this work’s planning, execution, article preparation or in the decision to submit the article for publication. The views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the funding Trusts, the NHS, the NIHR, or the Department of Health. Publisher Copyright: © 2022 American Chemical Society.

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Abstract

Objectives To test the hypothesis that people with concurrent diagnosis of epilepsy and psychogenic nonepileptic seizures (PNES) are at increased risk of attempting suicide as compared to people with epilepsy or PNES alone. To report on suicide rates. Methods Retrospective cohort study from the UK largest tertiary mental health care provider, with linked nationwide admission and mortality data from the Hospital Episode Statistics and Office for National Statistics. Participants were 2460 people with a primary or secondary diagnosis of epilepsy, PNES or concurrent epilepsy and PNES attending between 1 January 2007 and 18 June 2021. The primary outcome was a first hospital admission for suicide attempt (International Classification of Diseases, version 10 X60-X84). Results 9% of participants had at least one suicide attempt-related hospital admission. For people with concurrent diagnosis of epilepsy and PNES, the odds for suicide attempt-related admissions were 2.52 times the odds of people with epilepsy alone (OR 0.40; 95% CI 0.21 to 0.79; p=0.01). Odds were comparable between people with concurrent diagnosis and people with PNES alone (OR 0.75; 95% CI 0.41 to 1.48; p=0.40). Post hoc analyses revealed that the odds of people with PNES alone were 1.93 times the odds of people with epilepsy alone (OR 0.52; 95% CI 0.38 to 0.70; p<0.001). Conclusions People with concurrent diagnosis of epilepsy and PNES or PNES alone have significantly increased odds of hospitalisation due to suicide attempt as compared to people with epilepsy alone (152% and 93% increase, respectively). These findings have direct implications for the clinical management of suicide risk in people with epilepsy.

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