Suicidal Behavior in Fibromyalgia Patients: Rates and Determinants of Suicide Ideation, Risk, Suicide, and Suicidal Attempts—A Systematic Review of the Literature and Meta-Analysis of Over 390,000 Fibromyalgia Patients

Mohammad Adawi, Wen Chen, Nicola Luigi Bragazzi, Abdulla Watad, Dennis McGonagle, Yarden Yavne, Adi Kidron, Hadas Hodadov, Daniela Amital, Howard Amital

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Suicide is a leading cause of death worldwide, affecting ~800,000 people every year. Fibromyalgia is an extremely prevalent rheumatic disease with a predisposition for comorbid anxiety and depression, which are known risk factors for suicidal behavior. Suicidality and relevant risk factors for suicidal behavior have not been thoroughly studied in patients with fibromyalgia. Objectives: To investigate the risk of suicidal ideation and attempts in patients with fibromyalgia. Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis was conducted and reported according to the “Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-analyses” (PRISMA) standards. Also, the gray literature was extensively searched. Results: Thirteen studies were included in the present systematic review and meta-analysis, including 394,087 fibromyalgia patients. Sample size ranged from 44 to 199,739 subjects, mean age ranged from 45.8 to 54.5 years while the female percentage with fibromyalgia ranged from 17.1 to 100.0%. The overall suicide ideation prevalence was 29.57% (95%CI 1.84–72.07), with an OR 9.12 of (95%CI 1.42–58.77), ranging from 2.34 (95%CI 1.49–3.66) to 26.89 (95%CI 5.72–126.42). Pooled suicide attempt prevalence was 5.69% [95%CI 1.26–31.34], with an OR of 3.12 [95%CI 1.37–7.12]. Suicide risk was higher with respect to the general population with an OR of 36.77 (95%CI 15.55–96.94), as well as suicide events with an HR of 1.38 (95%CI 1.17–1.71). Determinants of suicidality were found to be: employment status, disease severity, obesity and drug dependence, chronic pain and co-morbidities, in particular depression, anxiety, poor sleep, and global mental health. However, in some cases, after adjusting for psychiatric conditions, the threshold of statistical significance was not achieved. Conclusion: Fibromyalgia patients are particularly prone to suicide, in terms of ideation, attempt, risk and events, warranting a pre-emptive screening of their mental health status. Given the few studies available, the high amount of heterogeneity, the evidence of publications bias and the lack of statistical significance when adjusting for underlying psychiatric co-morbidities, further high-quality studies should be conducted. Clinical Trial Registration: ClinicalTrial.gov, identifier 10.17605/OSF.IO/Y4BUE.

Original languageEnglish
Article number629417
JournalFrontiers in Psychiatry
Volume12
DOIs
StatePublished - 19 Nov 2021

Keywords

  • PRISMA guidelines
  • fibromyalgia
  • meta analysis
  • suicidal ideation and attempt
  • systematic review

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