Pattern of suicides in Ile-Ife, Nigeria

West Afr J Med. 2001 Jul-Sep;20(3):259-62.


This is a study of pattern of autopsy findings in cases of completed suicides, with respect to age, sex and methods employed over a period of 11 years and 2 months. Suicides are generally reported to be rare in the less developed countries. Yet sudden deaths of indetermined aetiology are a well-recognized entity. Besides, it has been established that depressive disorders, a major cause of suicides, hitherto thought to be rare in Africa, is now recognized to be fairly common, presenting in a rather subtle form with features of somatization. Suicides in Ife were found to be 0.4 per 100,000 population with a higher incidence in males with a ratio 3.6 to 1. The majority of the victims were in the third decade of life. The majority of suicides were committed with Gammalin 20 and the local Dane gun. Those who used the gun applied it to the head and neck region in 76% of the cases.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Firearms / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nigeria / epidemiology
  • Poisoning / epidemiology
  • Suicide / ethnology
  • Suicide / statistics & numerical data*