A Study on Pattern of Suicidal Deaths Brought for Medicolegal Autopsy at Mortuary of Siddhartha Medical College and Govt. General Hospital, Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh
Keywords:Suicidal Deaths, Hanging, Poisoning, Self-Immolation, Medicolegal Autopsy.
Background: The aim is to study the pattern of suicidal deaths, demographic profile including various contributary factors of victims and analyze the magnitude of deaths in and around Vijayawada part of Andhra Pradesh so that preventive measures can be set up to avoid such situation. A death by suicide is defined as the deliberate termination of life. For a death to be a suicide, it should be an un-natural death, the desire to die should originate within the person, and there should be a reason for ending their life, according to the National Crime Records Bureau. While India’s suicide rate of 14.04/lakh population in 2019 puts it at 49th rank globally, the grim reality of the highest numbers of suicides being reported annually from India cannot be overlooked. When you look at suicide deaths, the highest suicide rates are in the south. In central India, including Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, you have “middling suicide rates”, and the rate falls up north, in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
Material & Methods: A five years retrospective and cross-sectional study was conducted in Forensic Medicine
and Toxicology Department, Siddhartha Medical College, Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh. All the autopsies
conducted on victims of suicidal deaths during the period from Jan, 2016 to Dec, 2020 were studied from the
available data. Inclusion criteria includes all the suicidal deaths due to poisoning, hanging and self-immolation by burns. Exclusion criteria includes suicidal deaths from causes other than poisoning, hanging and suicidal burns like drowning, electrocution, fall from height etc.
Results: It is clear that committing suicide by consuming poison accounts for major number of deaths followed by committing suicide by hanging and least followed by committing suicide by self-immolation. It is also clear that committing suicides has increased year by year from 2016 to 2020 irrespective of committing suicide by hanging, poisoning. Coming to sex pattern, suicide by hanging was observed more in males. Sex pattern in suicidal deaths due to poisoning clearly showed that females outnumbered males. Sex pattern in suicidal deaths due to self-immolation clearly showed that females outnumbered males with high margin. Coming to the age pattern in committing suicidal deaths by hanging, 30 – 45 years age group showed highest incidence year by year followed by 45 – 60 years and least among 15 – 25 years age group. Where as in case of suicidal deaths by poisoning and self-immolation, incidence was highest in 30 – 45 age group followed by 15 – 30 years age group and least among 45 – 60 years group.
Conclusion: According to the World Health Organization, in India, suicide is an emerging and serious public
health issue. Suicide rates in India have been rising over the past five decades. India’s contribution to global
suicide deaths increased from 25.3% in 1990 to 36.6% in 2016 among women, and from 18.7% to 24.3% among men. In 2016, suicide was the most common cause of death in both the age groups of 15–29 years and 15–39 years in India. Factors such as frustration, family problems, love affairs, poverty, harassment, sexual violence, social boycott, chronic diseases and bankruptcy were studied as the main reasons leading to committing of suicides in people.The need for a strategy which will raise awareness and help make suicide prevention a national priority has to be recognized. Such a national strategy will need a comprehensive approach that encompasses the promotion,coordination, and support of activities to be implemented across the country at national, regional, and local levels.The program would need to be tailored for populations at risk.
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