Folic acid treatment associated with decreased risk of suicide attempts
The study, published in JAMA Psychiatry on September 28th, used data from the health insurance claims of 866,586 patients and looked at the relationship between folic acid treatment and suicide attempts over a two-year period. They found that patients who filled prescriptions for folic acid, also known as vitamin B9, experienced a 44% reduction in suicidal events (suicide attempts and intentional self-harm). Robert Gibbons, PhD, the Blum-Riese Professor of Biostatistics and Medicine at the University of Chicago, the lead author of the study
, is hopeful that these findings could improve suicide prevention efforts, especially because of how accessible folic acid is.
“There are no real side effects, it doesn’t cost a lot of money, you can get it without a prescription,” Gibbons said. “This could potentially save tens of thousands of lives.”
#mentalhealth #folicacid #B9
Gibbons RD, Hur K, Lavigne JE, Mann JJ. Association Between Folic Acid Prescription Fills and Suicide Attempts and Intentional Self-harm Among Privately Insured US Adults. JAMA Psychiatry. Published online September 28, 2022. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2022.2990