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Insomnia Tied to Suicidal Thoughts, Worse Symptoms With Schizophrenia

WEDNESDAY, April 14, 2021 -- Insomnia is associated with suicidal ideation, recent suicide attempt, and greater psychopathology in schizophrenia, according to a study published in the May/June issue of the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry.

Brian J. Miller, M.D., Ph.D., from the Medical College of Georgia in Augusta, and colleagues investigated relationships between current insomnia, suicidal ideation during the past two weeks, suicide attempt in the past six months, and current psychopathology among patients with schizophrenia.

The researchers found that after controlling for multiple potential confounding factors, terminal insomnia was associated with significantly increased odds of current suicidal ideation (odds ratio, 2.7), while initial/middle insomnia was associated with significantly increased odds of suicide attempt in the previous six months (odds ratio, 5.5). There were also associations noted between terminal insomnia and higher Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale total, positive subscale, and general psychopathology subscale scores.

"Findings provide additional evidence that formal assessment of insomnia is relevant to the clinical care of patients with schizophrenia as an indicator of suicidal ideation and behavior, as well as symptom severity," the authors write.

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