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Childhood trauma and its consequences
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 Post subject: Birth Trauma and suicide
PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2008 2:21 am 
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Location: Sweden
Found this article that there is a scientific connection between traumatic complications during birth and later suicidal behavior.

Reprinted from the British Medical Journal (1998;317:1346-1349)
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Pain felt by an infant during a difficult birth may increase the risk of violent suicide later in life, especially among men, according to Swedish researchers.
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Researchers compared the birth records of 242 people born in seven Stockholm hospitals between 1945 - 1980 who committed suicide by violent means between 1978 - 1995, to those of 403 of their biological siblings born during the same period and at the same group of hospitals.
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``Offspring who subsequently committed suicide were subjected to about twice as many interventions at birth than their siblings,'' write researchers Professors Bertil Jacobson and Marc Bygdeman of the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden, in the November 14th issue of the British Medical Journal.
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The team estimates that, compared with those who had not experienced multiple trauma at birth, men who had experienced such trauma ran an almost 5 times greater risk for violent suicide, and women ran a slightly higher risk.
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``We believe that obstetric procedures should be chosen to minimize pain and discomfort to the infant if an increased risk of suicide by violent means is to be avoided,'' the researchers conclude.
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But the researchers speculate that the circumstances that give rise to the need for obstetric intervention may cause the increased suicide risk, rather than the intervention itself. ''Perhaps these individuals are at a high risk in some subtle way, for which the need for obstetric intervention is merely a marker,'' write Jacobson and Bygdeman.
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The researchers call for more study of their findings, and different studies to see if accident proneness is also linked to birth trauma.
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Dr. Yeates Conwell, an associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Rochester School of Medicine, New York, called the study ``intriguing.''
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``The methodology is good and it makes us want to know more about perinatal trauma and subsequent suicide,'' he said in an interview with Reuters Health. However, psychiatric illness is the most powerful risk factor for suicide, Conwell noted.
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``You can't go and fix the birth trauma but you can diagnosis the schizophrenia, depression, substance abuse and other recognizable risk factors for which suicide interventions are available,'' he said.

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A more detailed document (PDF) of this research can be found here.

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