Introduction: Although depression is a known risk factor for suicide, little is known about how the prevalence of co-occurring major depressive disorder (MDD) and suicidal ideation/behavior has changed in the last decade, overall and by demographic factors.
Methods: Cross-sectional study of 2009-2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) respondents who self-reported a past-year major depressive episode and past-year suicidal ideation (MDD+SI, reported “serious thoughts, plan or attempt to kill self”). Prevalence, overall and by age, gender, and race were estimated and extrapolated to the US adult population. Changes in prevalence were analyzed using design-corrected logistic regression.
Results: From 2009 to 2017, the prevalence of MDD+SI increased by 29.8% among US adults (from 1.7%-2.2%, respectively; P for trend < 0.001). Among those with MDD, a 21.6% increase was observed (25.7%-31.2%; P>0.001). By age, increases were seen in all age groups but were most pronounced among those 18-25 years old (106.7% increase from 2.8% to 5.7%; P < 0.001) and 65+ (210.2% increase from 0.2% to 0.6%; P=0.008). By sex, prevalence increased by 39.4% (1.9%-2.7%; P=0.004) among women and was stable among men. By race, increases were observed in the White and multiracial groups and stable in other race groups.
Conclusions: In this nationally representative survey of US adults, MDD+SI prevalence significantly increased between 2009 and 2017, notably so in young adults, women and the multiracial population. Findings suggest potential age, sex, and racial disparities that warrant attention. Further studies are needed to monitor these emerging trends to optimize clinical intervention.
This poster was presented at the 32nd annual Psych Congress, held Oct. 3-6, 2019, in San Diego, California.