[Suicide of Psychiatric Inpatients Assisted by Euthanasia Advocacy Groups. Cases of Assisted Suicide?]

Nervenarzt. 1999 Jul;70(7):645-9. doi: 10.1007/s001150050490.
[Article in German]


The debate on passive and active euthanasia has met a controversial echo both in the German-speaking media and in professional publications within recent years. This discussion, however, largely excluded mentally ill patients. Also, euthanasia advocacy groups have usually distanced themselves from euthanasia in psychiatric patients. We report here two cases from our hospital in which inpatients with affective disorders committed assisted suicide during a hospital pass. We discuss these events under the assumption that these are cases of questionable active euthanasia in mentally ill patients whose judgement was considerably compromised by their disorder.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Borderline Personality Disorder / psychology
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Euthanasia / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Euthanasia, Passive / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Informed Consent*
  • Mentally Disabled Persons / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Mentally Disabled Persons / psychology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Advocacy / trends
  • Self-Help Groups / organization & administration
  • Suicide, Assisted / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Suicide, Assisted / prevention & control
  • Suicide, Assisted / psychology
  • Switzerland