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Cannabis use and suicide attempts among 86,254 adolescents aged 12–15 years from 21 low- and middle-income countries

Version 2 2024-06-13, 17:31
Version 1 2023-10-23, 02:33
journal contribution
posted on 2024-06-13, 17:31 authored by AF Carvalho, B Stubbs, D Vancampfort, S Kloiber, M Maes, J Firth, PA Kurdyak, DJ Stein, J Rehm, A Koyanagi
Background: Evidence suggests that cannabis use may be associated with suicidality in adolescence. Nevertheless, very few studies have assessed this association in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). In this cross-sectional survey, we investigated the association of cannabis use and suicidal attempts in adolescents from 21 LMICs, adjusting for potential confounders. Method: Data from the Global school-based Student Health Survey was analyzed in 86,254 adolescents from 21 countries [mean (SD) age = 13.7 (0.9) years; 49.0% girls]. Suicide attempts during past year and cannabis during past month and lifetime were assessed. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were conducted. Results: The overall prevalence of past 30-day cannabis use was 2.8% and the age-sex adjusted prevalence varied from 0.5% (Laos) to 37.6% (Samoa), while the overall prevalence of lifetime cannabis use was 3.9% (range 0.5%–44.9%). The overall prevalence of suicide attempts during the past year was 10.5%. Following multivariable adjustment to potential confounding variables, past 30-day cannabis use was significantly associated with suicide attempts (OR = 2.03; 95% CI: 1.42–2.91). Lifetime cannabis use was also independently associated with suicide attempts (OR = 2.30; 95% CI: 1.74–3.04). Conclusion: Our data indicate that cannabis use is associated with a greater likelihood for suicide attempts in adolescents living in LMICs. The causality of this association should be confirmed/refuted in prospective studies to further inform public health policies for suicide prevention in LMICs.

History

Journal

European Psychiatry

Volume

56

Pagination

8-13

Location

Cambridge, England

ISSN

0924-9338

eISSN

1778-3585

Language

English

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Issue

1

Publisher

Cambridge University Press

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