Objective: Past meta-analyses on suicide in eating disorders included few available studies.
Method: PubMed/Medline search for papers including sample n ≥40 and follow-up ≥5 years: 40 studies on anorexia nervosa (AN), 16 studies on bulimia nervosa (BN), and three studies on binge eating disorder (BED) were included.
Results: Of 16,342 patients with AN, 245 suicides occurred over a mean follow-up of 11.1 years (suicide rate=0.124 per 100 person-years). Standardized mortality ratio (SMR) was 31.0 (Poisson 95% CI=21.0-44.0); a clear decrease in suicide risk over time was observed in recent decades. Of 1768 patients with BN, four suicides occurred over a mean follow-up of 7.5 years (suicide rate=0.030 per 100 person-years): SMR was 7.5 (1.6-11.6). No suicide occurred among 246 patients with BED (mean follow-up=5.3 years).
Conclusion: AN and BN share many risk factors for suicide: the factors causing lower suicide rates per person-year in BN compared to AN should be investigated.
© 2010 John Wiley & Sons A/S.