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NCJ Number: 201556 Find in a Library
Title: Suicides by Fall From Height in Geneva, Switzerland, From 1991 to 2000
Journal: Journal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:48  Issue:4  Dated:July 2003  Pages:821-826
Author(s): Guillaume Perret M.D.; Mark Flomenbaum M.D.; Romano La Harpe M.D.
Date Published: July 2003
Page Count: 6
Type: Case Study
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study reviewed retrospectively all cases of suicide by fall from heights in Geneva for the period from 1991 through 2000.
Abstract: During the 1990’s, Geneva experienced an economic crises that resulted in widespread unemployment. Unemployment, as well as mental illness have been shown to be important risk factors for suicide. The authors retrospectively examined the 197 suicide by fall from heights that occurred in Geneva during the study period. Of these 197 suicides, 65 autopsies and 48 toxicology analysis were conducted. Females accounted for 56 percent of the suicide victims, while males accounted for 44 percent of the suicide victims. Most victims jumped from a height of between two to seven stories; generally from their homes. Injury sites included the thorax, abdomen, skull, vertebrae, pelvis, and limbs. Psychiatric illness was reported in 38 percent of these cases. Results of toxicology analysis performed in 24 percent of the cases indicated the presence of benzodiazepines, cannabis, and antidepressants. Limitations of the study include the fact that only 33 percent of the cases had autopsies performed and only 24 percent had toxicology analysis performed. Despite these limitations, the findings regarding the pattern of injuries, psychiatric history, and toxicology reports are significant and consistent with other suicide studies. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Forensic pathology
Index Term(s): Death investigations; Drug use; Forensic sciences; Suicide; Switzerland
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