Relations among behavioral and questionnaire measures of impulsivity in a sample of suicide attempters

Suicide Life Threat Behav. 2013 Aug;43(4):460-7. doi: 10.1111/sltb.12030. Epub 2013 Apr 22.


Despite the focus on impulsivity within suicide research, it remains unclear the extent to which impulsivity assessments, that purportedly tap similar constructs, show significant overlap in samples of individuals with suicidal behaviors. In a sample of 69 suicide attempters, we took a multitrait, multimethod approach to examine the relation among various questionnaire and behavioral assessments of impulsivity facets. With the exception of urgency and go-stop performance, there was little evidence of concordance between questionnaire and behavioral measures. These findings suggest researchers cannot presume that measures of "impulsivity" assess similar psychological processes and that more nuanced terminology is needed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Impulsive Behavior / psychology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Risk Factors
  • Suicidal Ideation
  • Suicide, Attempted / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires