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Alcohol dependent individuals show greater risk of suicide in evening hours

June 14, 2016

DARIEN, IL - A new study found that there is a circadian pattern of peak and nadir in the incidence of suicides committed in alcohol dependent individuals.

Subjects who consumed heavy amounts of alcohol had a peak incidence of suicide at 9PM, and a low around 5PM. In contrast, the peak incidence was around 12 PM for those individuals who did not drink or drank moderately and a low at 4 AM.

"The presence of temporal pattern in the incidence of suicides will help us understand the phenomenon from a clinical and a research viewpoint," said Dr. Subhajit Chakravorty, assistant professor of psychiatry, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania. "From a clinical perspective, the results will help us identify patients at higher risk of completing suicide and to allocate our limited resources more efficiently. From a research perspective, future studies should explore the underlying mechanisms of how and why different alcohol doses interact with the time of day and other clinical factors to increase the risk of suicide."

The research abstract was published recently in an online supplement of the journal Sleep and will be presented Wednesday, June 14, in Denver at SLEEP 2016, the 30th Anniversary Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies LLC (APSS).

Archival data of suicides from the 2003-2010 National Violent Death Reporting System of the Center for Disease Control were evaluated in individuals with alcohol dependence for whom blood alcohol levels were available. The time of injury was categorized into 1 hour segments and then hourly distribution was used to compute the incidence of suicides over the circadian period.
-end-
This study was supported by the following grants: VA grant 1K2-CX000855 (SC); NIH K24 AA013736 (HRK); NIH K23 HL110216; NIH R21ES022931 (MAG) and NIH R01AG041783 (MLP).

Abstract Title: The Circadian Pattern of Suicides in Intoxicated Individuals with Alcohol Dependence
Abstract ID: 0776
Presentation Date: Wednesday, June 15
Presentation Type: Oral presentation
Presentation Time: 8:15 am-8:30 am

SLEEP 2016 is a joint venture of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society. The SLEEP 2016 abstract supplement is available at http://sleepmeeting.org/abstract-supplements. For a copy of the abstract or to arrange an interview with the study author or an AASM spokesperson, please contact AASM Senior Communications Coordinator Amy Pyle at 630-737-9700, ext. 9366, or apyle@aasmnet.org.

About the American Academy of Sleep Medicine


Established in 1975, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) improves sleep health and promotes high quality patient centered care through advocacy, education, strategic research, and practice standards. The AASM has a combined membership of 11,000 accredited member sleep centers and individual members, including physicians, scientists and other health care professionals (http://www.aasmnet.org).

American Academy of Sleep Medicine

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