An Elder Suicide Glossary
An Elder Suicide Glossary
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Elder Suicide and Post-Acute Care
© HCMA, Ltd., 1999
ACUTE SUICIDE THREAT - Individual has lethal means and voices intent. AGE-SPECIFIC - Suicide rate broken down by age groupings. AGENERATIVE SUICIDE - Caused by personal alienation (Shneidman). AGITATION - Extreme restlessness common in individuals in suicidal crisis. ALIENATION - Feeling of being apart from or unattached to others. AMBIVALENCE - Suicidal individual's wish to both live and die. ANOMIC SUICIDE - Type caused by a disrupted relationship (Durkheim). ASSISTED SUICIDE - Completion of suicide with the aid of a physician. ATTEMPTED SUICIDE - Unsuccessful effort to complete suicide.
BIOMARKER - See Marker. BLOODLESS MEANS - Toxic substances, drowning, hanging, suffocation.
CHEMICAL DEFICIENCY - Depletion of a neurotransmitter (e.g. serotonin). COMPLETE SUICIDE - Succumb to the suicide disease process. CONSTRICTION - Narrowing of individual outlook and options (Shneidman). CRY FOR HELP - Expression of suicidal intent in the hope of assistance. CUMULATIVE LOSS - Succession of deprivations/frustrations causing stress or pain.
DEPRESSION - Disorder involving abnormal sadness and hopelessness. DOUBLE SUICIDE - Completion by a couple or by two friends. DYADIC SUICIDE - Caused by an interpersonal problem (Shneidman).
EGOISTIC SUICIDE - Type caused by lack of social ties (Durkheim). EGOTIC SUICIDE - Caused by an intrapersonal problem (Shneidman). ELDER SUICIDE - Occurrence of suicide among the aged.
FACILITATING SUICIDE - Legal term for helping in a suicide completion. FRUSTRATION - Inability to meet an important personal need or drive.
GENDER-SPECIFIC - Suicide rate broken down by sex. GESTURER - Individual associated with one or more suicide gestures.
HIGH RISK FACTOR - Social variable associated with high incidence of suicide. HIGH RISK GROUP - Population segment with a high suicide rate.
INTENT - Factor in forensic determination of a death as suicide.
LETHALITY - Indicates potential of means of suicide to cause death.
MAKING FINAL PLANS - Overt actions indicating imminent jeopardy. MANIPULATED SUICIDE - Completion induced by persuasion (Battin). MARKER - Physiological indicator or predictor of suicide risk. MEANS - Firearms, rope, poison, etc., used to complete suicide. MEANS RESTRICTION - Preventing access to weapons, drugs, etc. (CDC). MURDER-SUICIDE - Victim commits homicide before completing suicide.
NEUROCHEMICALS - Substances conveying messages in the brain. NEURON - Brain cell that processes information. NEUROTRANSMITTER - Neurochemical that attaches to a receptor. NONLETHAL METHOD - Means that may not be immediately fatal. NONVIOLENT MEANS - See Bloodless Means.
OBLIGATORY SUICIDE - Ethical concept of suicide as duty (Cosculluela). ORGANIC SUICIDE - Response to serious physical illness and/or pain (Menninger). OTHER-DRIVEN SUICIDE - Completion impelled by other person(s) (Fairbairn).
PARASUICIDE - Non-fatal act of self-harm; a suicide gesture. PARTIAL SUICIDE - Non-fatal self-destructive act, e.g., self-mutilation. PENACIDE - Killing of pain; completion of suicide to end intense pain. PERTURBATION - Increased emotional disturbance (Shneidman). PRODROMAL CLUES - Individual behavioral signs of suicidality PSYCHACHE - Severe psychological pain (Shneidman). PSYCHOLOGICAL AUTOPSY - Post-death search for cause of suicide.
RATIONAL SUICIDE - Presumption of reasonable choice by the terminally ill. RECEPTOR - Target of a neurotransmitter. REPEATER - Individual with history of suicide attempts. RESCUE - Successful intervention in a suicide attempt. RISK FACTOR - Attribute associated with the likelihood of suicide. ROLE LOSS - Personal identification (e.g., spouse) lost due to death.
SEROTONIN - Neurotransmitter that inhibits self-destructive behavior. SILENT SUICIDE - Self-starvation and medical noncompliance by the aged. SITUATIONAL CLUES - Loss, other major life event linked with suicide risk. SUICIDAL BEHAVIOR - Suicide gestures, attempts, and completions. SUICIDAL IDEATION - Thoughts about completing suicide. SUICIDAL THREAT - Statement indicating that suicide is being considered. SUICIDALITY - Individual's level of danger to her/himself (Shneidman). SUICIDE - A transient disease caused by psychological stress and pain. SUICIDE ATTEMPT - Failed attempt to complete suicide. SUICIDE COMPLETER - Individual who has died of suicide. SUICIDE GESTURE - An action of self-harm indicating suicidal intent. SUICIDE INCIDENCE- Number of cases in a given time in a given area. SUICIDE INTERVENTION - Prevention of an imminent or in process attempt. SUICIDE PACT - Agreement to complete suicide by two or more individuals. SUICIDE PLAN - Inclusive of time frame and means to complete suicide. SUICIDE PREVALENCE - Cases at a given time relative to population size. SUICIDE RATE - Occurrence of suicide in a given population or community. SUICIDE WATCH - Inpatient or in-home monitoring of a suicidal individual. SYNDROMATIC CLUES- Behavioral, verbal, situational indicators of suicide risk.
UNDER-REPORTING - Incidence of suicides not recorded as such. UNFINISHED BUSINESS - Personal concerns to be resolved before death.
VIOLENT MEANS - Suicide by firearms, hanging, slashing, falls.
WARNING SIGN - Overt indicator of suicidal risk of an individual.
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