(HealthDay News) — Psychiatric comorbidity is associated with higher risks for premature mortality and suicide among individuals with chronic noncommunicable diseases, according to a study published online in PLOS Medicine.

Amir Sariaslan, PhD, from the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom, and colleagues compared the risks for premature mortality (at 65 years of age or younger) and suicide in people with common noncommunicable diseases, with and without psychiatric disorders. The analysis included inpatient and outpatient diagnoses of chronic respiratory diseases (249,825 patients), cardiovascular diseases (568,818 patients), and diabetes (255,579 patients), with follow-up through 2013 for all individuals born between 1932 and 1995, as well as 10.3 million matched controls and 1.1 million unaffected biological siblings.

The researchers found that all-cause mortality was higher in individuals with noncommunicable diseases and comorbid psychiatric disorders (15.4 to 21.1%) than in those with noncommunicable diseases without comorbid psychiatric disorders (5.5 to 9.1%). Suicide mortality was also higher (1.2 to 1.6% vs 0.1% in those with versus without psychiatric comorbidity, respectively). Compared with unaffected siblings, the increased mortality risks among individuals with noncommunicable diseases were even higher for those with versus without psychiatric comorbidities.

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“Improving assessment, treatment, and follow-up of people with comorbid psychiatric disorders may reduce the risk of mortality in people with chronic noncommunicable diseases,” the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to Evolan Pharma and Shire.

Abstract/Full Text