Self-Injury Tops Diabetes As Cause of Death in United States

TUESDAY, Sept. 4, 2018 — In the United States, self-injury mortality (SIM) exceeded diabetes as a cause of death in 2015, with the gap expanding in 2016, according to a study published online Aug. 27 in Injury Prevention.

Ian R.H. Rockett, Ph.D., M.P.H., from West Virginia University in Morgantown, and colleagues examined mortality from self-injury in the United States. SIM comprised registered or known suicides by any method and estimated non-suicide deaths from opioid or other drug self-intoxication.

The researchers found that in 2015, SIM surpassed diabetes as a cause of death in the United States. In 2016, the gap expanded, with rates of 29.1 and 24.8 per 100,000 population, respectively.

“Development of strategies to prevent SIM will be facilitated by focusing on factors that are common risks for diverse outcomes,” the authors write. “Like premature mortality frequently associated with diabetes, deaths from self-injurious behaviors are preventable.”

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Posted: September 2018

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