Antidepressant Use and Method of Suicide in the United States: Variation by Age and Sex, 1998-2007

Julie Phillips, Colleen N. Nugent

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


This study examines the association between antidepressant use and suicide rates, by sex, age, and method of suicide, between 1998 and 2007 in the United States. Overall suicide rates for the young and elderly declined but rates for the middle-aged increased. All age groups experienced increases in antidepressant use. The elderly exhibited the largest increase in antidepressant usage and biggest declines in suicide rates. Firearm suicides for men and women declined but suicide by drug poisoning rose, particularly for women. For young males and elderly males and females, better treatment of severe depression may have contributed to declining suicide rates. However, rising rates of prescription drug use are associated with higher levels of suicide by drug poisoning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)360-372
Number of pages13
JournalArchives of Suicide Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


  • United States
  • antidepressants
  • method
  • suicide rates

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