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Comment & Response |

Suicides Among Military Personnel

Mary Jo Larson, PhD, MPA1; Grant A. Ritter, PhD1; Rachel Sayko Adams, PhD, MPH1
[+] Author Affiliations
1Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts
JAMA. 2013;310(23):2565. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.282695.
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To the Editor Ms LeardMann and colleagues1 reported on 83 suicides among 151 560 participants of the MCS and found that suicide was not associated with deployment or combat. In particular, 58% of suicide deaths were among those without any deployments; the age- and sex-adjusted hazard ratio for number of deployments was not significant; and the cumulative number of days deployed was negatively correlated with suicide risk. This study draws attention to depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, and alcohol problems as risk factors for suicide, but we believe the method of analysis was flawed in regard to deployment.


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December 18, 2013
Charles W. Hoge, MD; Cynthia A. LeardMann, MPH; Edward J. Boyko, MD, MPH
1Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Silver Spring, Maryland
2Deployment Health Research Department, Naval Health Research Center, San Diego, California
3Seattle Epidemiologic Research and Information Center, Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System, Seattle, Washington
JAMA. 2013;310(23):2565-2566. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.282701.
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