Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of jrsocmedLink to Publisher's site
J R Soc Med. 1997 September; 90(9): 496–498.
PMCID: PMC1296527

Trends in self-poisoning: admissions to a central London hospital, 1991-1994.


Self-poisoning is a common reason for admission to hospital; and, although most patients admitted do not have a psychiatric disorder, as a group they are at greatly increased risk of completed suicide. Admissions to a hospital in Central London over a four-year period were examined with special attention to patients admitted more than once. From 1991 to 1994 admissions for self-poisoning rose by 108%, with larger increases in the younger age groups of both sexes. 9% of patients were admitted more than once, the mean interval to repetition being three months. A third of the repeaters were readmitted within one month. The increase in admissions for self-poisoning, which has been noted elsewhere in the UK, is unlikely to be due wholly to changes in clinical practice. In view of the relation between parasuicide and suicide, further research and analysis is urgently needed.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (362K), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Kreitman N. Can suicide and parasuicide be prevented? J R Soc Med. 1989 Nov;82(11):648–652. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Nordentoft M, Breum L, Munck LK, Nordestgaard AG, Hunding A, Laursen Bjaeldager PA. High mortality by natural and unnatural causes: a 10 year follow up study of patients admitted to a poisoning treatment centre after suicide attempts. BMJ. 1993 Jun 19;306(6893):1637–1641. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Platt S, Bille-Brahe U, Kerkhof A, Schmidtke A, Bjerke T, Crepet P, De Leo D, Haring C, Lonnqvist J, Michel K, et al. Parasuicide in Europe: the WHO/EURO multicentre study on parasuicide. I. Introduction and preliminary analysis for 1989. Acta Psychiatr Scand. 1992 Feb;85(2):97–104. [PubMed]
  • Hawton K, Fagg J. Trends in deliberate self poisoning and self injury in Oxford, 1976-90. BMJ. 1992 May 30;304(6839):1409–1411. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Beck P, Lazarus J, Scorer R, Smith P, Routledge P. Increasing rate of deliberate self poisoning. BMJ. 1994 Mar 19;308(6931):789–789. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Stark C, Smith H, Hall D. Increase in parasuicide in Scotland. BMJ. 1994 Jun 11;308(6943):1569–1570. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • MacNamara AF, Riyat MS, Quinton DN. The changing profile of poisoning and its management. J R Soc Med. 1996 Nov;89(11):608–610. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Ebbage J, Farr C, Skinner DV, White PD. The psychosocial assessment of patients discharged from accident and emergency departments after deliberate self-poisoning. J R Soc Med. 1994 Sep;87(9):515–516. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine are provided here courtesy of Royal Society of Medicine Press