Suicide and nonsuicidal self-injury

The suicide research group focuses on improving suicide assessment and management by identifying risk factors and warning signs in high-risk clinical groups and applying these findings to patient care. Investigators in this group have improved patient assessment and clinical practices for suicidal treatment and prevention.


  • Characteristics of survivors. J. Michael Bostwick, M.D., is investigating suicide attempts among patients who received medical care, using an Olmsted County, Minn., cohort. Dr. Bostwick is interested in what proportion eventually died by suicide and what characterizes long-term survivors.
  • Situational and medical factors. Dr. Bostwick is also involved in projects on physician suicide, transjurisdictional suicide, and suicide in patients hospitalized on medical or surgical units. Additionally, he is examining "scripts," or contexts within suicide attempts, to determine whether they correlate with eventual death.
  • Patient assessment. Timothy W. Lineberry, M.D., in collaboration with David A. Jobes, Ph.D., of The Catholic University of America, has validated the Suicide Status Form II (SSF II) to systemize the assessment of suicidal risk among inpatients. Dr. Lineberry has subsequently incorporated these findings into routine clinical care at Mayo Clinic's psychiatric hospital unit. His efforts also include exploring whether SSF II findings during hospitalization correlate with future suicide risk in high-risk groups over time.
  • Military suicide prevention. Dr. Lineberry serves as subject matter expert for military suicide prevention and as an adviser in shaping the military suicide research portfolio. He is currently analyzing whether clinical findings during hospitalization in different age groups and in males versus females are differentially associated with suicide risk over time.
  • Adolescents and self-injury. Leslie A. Sim, Ph.D., L.P., and her team are involved in several projects aimed to improve the understanding of suicide and nonsuicidal self-injury behavior in adolescents. The group is studying the roles of emotion regulation, family functioning and peer relationships in internalizing and externalizing behavior and nonsuicidal self-injury risk in adolescent psychiatric inpatients.