This article gives an account of some findings of the WHO/EURO multicentre study on parasuicide from the five Nordic centres: Helsinki (Finland), Stockholm (Sweden), and the countries of Funen (Denmark), Sø-Trøndelag (Norway) and Västerbotten (Sweden). For parasuicide patients treated in hospital in these five Nordic centres, the parasuicide rates per 100,000 inhabitants per annum were 222 for women, 213 for men and 224 for both sexes combined. In all the Nordic centres except Helsinki, women had higher parasuicide rates than men. The female/male parasuicide ratio was 1.16 for all Nordic centres. The highest parasuicide rates in the whole material were found in Helsinki, Stockholm and Funen, and the lowest in Sør-Trøndelag and Västerbotten. The highest parasuicide rates lay in the 30-39 age interval, i.e. the peak of parasuicide rates was in older age groups than previously reported. Single people, especially divorcees and those who have never been married, constitute a high-risk group in both sexes. The risk of parasuicide for single men is three times that for married men in all the Nordic centres except Sør-Trøndelag, where the risk is five times higher. The parasuicide risk for single women is twice as high as for married women except for women in Funen, where the risk for single and married women is almost equal. Exceptionally high parasuicide rates are also reported for Finnish citizens in Sweden, compared with Finns from the Helsinki centre. Parasuicide rates appear to be correlated with population density, since the densely populated areas of Helsinki, Stockholm and Funen evince higher parasuicide rates than the sparsely populated areas of Sør-Trøndelag and Västerbotten.
1994. Vol. 22, no 3, 170-7 p.