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The assessment and management of suicide risk in bipolar disorder 

The assessment and management of suicide risk in bipolar disorder
The assessment and management of suicide risk in bipolar disorder

Zoltán Rihmer

, Xénia Gonda

, and Péter Döme

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date: 26 June 2022

Bipolar spectrum disorders are among the most frequent psychiatric ailments associated with a considerable risk of suicidal behaviour. Approximately 4–19% of (mostly untreated) patients with bipolar disorders ultimately commit suicide, and about 20–60% of them make at least one suicide attempt in their lifetime. Compared with the general population, the risk of committing suicide is about 10–30 times higher in patients with bipolar disorder. However, the majority of bipolar patients never attempt or commit suicide. Therefore, the routine assessment of several risk factors for suicide in clinical practice may aid in the recognition of those patients who are at the highest risk. This chapter summarizes the clinically most relevant suicide risk and protective factors in bipolar disorders. In addition, we review evidence-based strategies for suicide prevention in bipolar disorder.

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