Intended for healthcare professionals

Clinical Review

Antidepressants and suicide: what is the balance of benefit and harm

BMJ 2004; 329 doi: (Published 01 July 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:34

Antidepressants and suicide in Ireland

In the context of the current debate on the efficacy of
antidepressants the following may be of interest.Ireland's suicide rate
has risen threefold since antidepressants became available with the
greatest increase occurring following the introduction of the SSRIs.
Additionally, admission rates (first and readmission rates) for depressive
disorders to psychiatric units and hospitals have shown no decline (unlike
those for schizophrenia) nor has there been any decrease in length of stay
for those hospitalised for depression over these time periods.

Competing interests:
None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

21 July 2004
Dermot Walsh
Research Psychiatrist
Health Research Board, Dublin.