Original Research

Parasuicide among youth in a general hospital in South Africa

T Mhlongo
Curationis | Vol 22, No 2 | a735 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/curationis.v22i2.735 | © 1999 T Mhlongo | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 27 September 1999 | Published: 27 September 1999

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T Mhlongo,, South Africa

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Parasuicide cases among youth (15-24 years) referred to the clinical psychology section of a regional hospital from 1995 to 1998 were reviewed. In all 100 cases (37 males and 63 females) were identified being about 10% of the caseload. As part of the clinical psychological assessment sociodemographic, clinical characteristics, trigger factors, employed methods and suicide intentions were analysed. Most patients were students (79%) or unemployed (16%). The major method employed to attempt suicide was ingestion of harmful substances (like paraffin, pesticides or battery acid)(73%). Acute social conflicts (38%), socio-economic deprivation (17%), AIDS phobia (17%), academic failure (14%), teenage pregnancy (10%) and mental illness (5%) triggered suicide attempts. Fifty-eight percent of the attempts were categorised as demonstrative and 27% as genuine. The psychodynamics of parasuicides are discussed in case studies and with reference to other studies.


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Crossref Citations

1. Attempted Suicide Among Iranian Population
Homayoun Sheikholeslami, Camellia Kani, Amir Ziaee
Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior  vol: 38  issue: 4  first page: 456  year: 2008  
doi: 10.1521/suli.2008.38.4.456