Incidence of Suicidality in AIDS and HIV-Positive Patients Attending a Psychiatry Outpatient Program

Mary Alice O’Dowd, David J. Biderman, F. Patrick McKegney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

42 Scopus citations


Current suicidality and many other characteristics were assessed in 183 patients in the various stages of HIV infection who were referred to a specialized HIV-related psychiatric clinic. Intravenous drug use was the most common HIV risk factor. Patients with AIDS had significantly less current suicidal ideation than patients with AIDS-related complex and asymptomatic HIV positivity. The lower suicidality in AIDS patients was independent of age, gender, HIV risk group, and source of referral. Possible explanations of this association include denial, refocusing of life goals in AIDS patients, and psychological changes related to central nervous system impairment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-40
Number of pages8
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1993


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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