The phenomenology and clinical correlates of suicidal thoughts and behaviors in youth with autism spectrum disorders

Eric A. Storch, Michael L. Sulkowski, Josh Nadeau, Adam B. Lewin, Elysse B. Arnold, P. Jane Mutch, Anna M. Jones, Tanya K. Murphy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

63 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study investigated the phenomenology and clinical correlates of suicidal thoughts and behaviors in youth with ASD (N = 102; range 7-16 years). The presence of suicidal thoughts and behavior was assessed through the Anxiety Disorders Interview Schedule-Child and Parent Versions. Children and parents completed measures of anxiety severity, functional impairment, and behavioral and emotional problems. Approximately 11 % of youth displayed suicidal thoughts and behaviors. Children with autism were more likely to have suicidal thoughts and behaviors whereas children with Asperger's disorder were less likely. Suicidal thoughts and behaviors were associated with the presence of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Overall, results suggest that suicidal thoughts and behaviors are common in youth with ASD, and may be related to depression and trauma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2450-2459
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Volume43
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2013

Keywords

  • Asperger's disorder
  • Autism spectrum disorders
  • Depression
  • Pervasive developmental disorder
  • Suicide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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