Effectiveness of Cognitive Therapy for Suicide Attempters With Drug Dependence Disorder

This study has been completed.
Information provided by:
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier:
First received: September 21, 2005
Last updated: October 5, 2010
Last verified: February 2009

This study will examine the effectiveness of combining cognitive therapy with enriched usual care for preventing subsequent suicide attempts in people with a drug dependence who have recently attempted suicide.

Condition Intervention Phase
Suicide, Attempted
Substance-Related Disorders
Behavioral: Cognitive Therapy
Phase 1

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Single Blind
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Cognitive Therapy for Suicide Attempters With Drug Dependence Disorder

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH):

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Suicidal Attempts, at Months 1, 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Suicide Ideation, at Months 1, 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24
  • Depression
  • Hopelessness
  • Substance Use

Estimated Enrollment: 48
Study Start Date: May 2005
Detailed Description:

Suicide attempts involving drug abuse are a major public health problem. Development of interventions that focus on reducing the suicide attempt rate among drug abusers is a necessity. There is a strong connection between drug abuse and both suicide attempts and completed suicide. As much as 45% of drug abusers have attempted suicide at least once. The rate of completed suicide among drug abusers has been reported to be as much as 30 times the rate for the general population. Unfortunately, there is a lack of empirically supported treatments for reducing suicidal behavior in drug abusers. This study will develop and evaluate the effectiveness of a cognitive therapy intervention for people with a drug dependence disorder who recently attempted suicide.

Participants in this single-blind study will be randomly assigned to one of two treatment groups: cognitive therapy combined with enriched usual care; or enriched usual care alone. An initial baseline assessment will occur within 7 days following the participant's suicide attempt and subsequent medical evaluation at a hospital emergency department. Suicide behavior and ideation, depression, hopelessness, and addiction severity will be assessed. Following the baseline assessment, treatment will begin. The cognitive therapy treatment will be specifically developed to prevent suicide attempts. It will involve the identification of proximal thoughts, images, and core beliefs that were activated prior to the suicide attempt. Cognitive and behavioral strategies will be applied to address the identified thoughts and beliefs. Patients will also learn adaptive ways of coping with stressors. The enriched usual care will entail standard treatments for suicide prevention. Study visits will occur 1, 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months following enrollment. Baseline measurements will be repeated at each study visit to evaluate participants' improvement. Participants receiving cognitive therapy will attend approximately 10 weekly or bi-weekly outpatient study visits. Participation will last for 2 years.

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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Recent suicide attempt with an emergency department visit within 48 hours of the attempt (suicide attempt is considered to be a potentially self-injurious behavior with a nonfatal outcome for which there is evidence, either explicit or implicit, that the individual intended to kill himself or herself)
  • Current DSM-IV diagnosis of a current drug dependence disorder within the past 6 months

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Self-mutilating behavior without intent to commit suicide
  • An acute, unstable, or severe Axis III disorder that may affect participation
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00218725

United States, Pennsylvania
Psychopathology Research Unit-University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States, 19104
Sponsors and Collaborators
Principal Investigator: Aaron T. Beck, MD University of Pennsylvania
Principal Investigator: Gregory K. Brown, PhD University of Pennsylvania
  More Information

No publications provided

ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00218725     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: P20 MH071905-02, 802439, FWA00003616, DSIR 83-ATP
Study First Received: September 21, 2005
Last Updated: October 5, 2010
Health Authority: United States: Federal Government

Keywords provided by National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH):
Cognitive Therapy
Substance Abuse

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Substance-Related Disorders
Suicide, Attempted
Behavioral Symptoms
Chemically-Induced Disorders
Mental Disorders
Self-Injurious Behavior

ClinicalTrials.gov processed this record on September 03, 2015