Depression but not seizure factors or quality of life predicts suicidality in epilepsy

H. Hecimovic*, J. M. Santos, J. Carter, H. P. Attarian, A. J. Fessler, V. Vahle, F. Gilliam

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to determine prevalence and predictive risk factors of suicidality in a large sample of epilepsy outpatients. We prospectively examined 193 consecutive adult epilepsy outpatients for depression, including suicidal ideation. Demographic and epilepsy factors, medication toxicity and health-related quality of life were also evaluated. The prevalence of suicidal ideation within the past two weeks was 11.9%. Although medication toxicity, health-related quality of life and BDI scores were each associated with suicidal ideation in the bivariate analyses, only the BDI remained significant in the logistic regression analysis. About one-fourth of the subjects with suicidal ideation had no significant symptoms of depression. Recent thoughts of suicide are a common occurrence in the outpatient epilepsy clinic setting, but these are not predicted by gender, age, seizure factors, medication toxicity or self-perceived quality of life. Although depression is associated with suicidal ideation, about one-fourth of the suicidal subjects were euthymic or only mildly depressed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)426-429
Number of pages4
JournalEpilepsy and Behavior
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2012


  • Beck Depression Inventory
  • Depression
  • Epilepsy
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Suicide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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