Suicidal Behavior

Suicidal Behavior

by Richard McKeon

Series: Advances in Psychotherapy – Evidence-Based Practice - Volume 14

Print edition
Print edition
Suicidal Behavior
ISBN: 9780889373273
1st edition 2009, viii/104 pages

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Out of print
Suicidal Behavior

The eBook of the 2nd edition is now available.

Practice-oriented, evidence-based guidance on assessment, management and treatment of suicidal behavior – one of the most devastating problems in modern society.

Almost one million people die worldwide by suicide each year, making it one of the leading causes of death throughout the lifespan. Suicide attempts outnumber deaths by suicide by a ratio of at least 25:1, those who attempt suicide are at high risk of later death by suicide, and suicide risk is one of the most frequent reasons for admissions to inpatient psychiatric units. Treatment of those at risk for suicide is thus a pressing priority. Research over the past two decades has led to the development of excellent empirically supported treatment methods. This book aims to increase clinicians' access to empirically supported interventions for suicidal behavior, with the hope that these methods will become the standard in clinical practice.

This book is both a compact "how-to" reference, for use by professional clinicians in their daily work, and an ideal educational resource for students and for practice-oriented continuing education. Structured similarly to others in the series, it is a "reader-friendly" guide covering aspects of the clinical assessment, management, and treatment of those at risk for suicide. It makes liberal use of tables, boxed clinical examples, and clinical vignettes, and other tools, for use in daily practice. The book, which also addresses common obstacles in treating individuals at risk for suicide represents an essential resource for anyone working with this high risk population.

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From the reviews

"[...] Each sentence [of this book] carefully crafted to contain meaningful content that will resonate with nearly every mental health clinician. This text is remarkably concise yet comprehensive, and the language is vivid. [...] [It] is replete with essential information that needs to be noted and digested [...]. For the seasoned clinician, the content will be validating. To further emphasize key points, useful schematics and tables are included as well as bold margin notes and clinical vignettes. All of these features enhance the use of the text as a reference."
Pamela K. Greene, PhD, RN, Senior Vice President of Patient Care Services and Chief Nursing Officer, The Menninger Clinic, Assistant Professor, Baylor College of Medicine, in Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic, Vol. 75, 2011

"For anyone engaged in mental health care, Dr McKeon's book is a welcome handy resource. It is a well-written short book that would quickly guide a busy practitioner. [...] Dr McKeon [...] has poured a lot of relevant and practical information for the busy clinician into this volume. It is a well referenced book, and I believe it will serve as a reliable "GPS" in the clinical trenches [...]."Rudra Prakash, MD, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and Veterans Administration, Nashville, Tennessee, in Journal of Clinical Psychiatry,Vol. 72, 2011

"[...] addresses the issue of suicide and its prevention and provides relevant pragmatic clinical assessment and treatment recommendations. [...] Also included are useful figures and tables, “clinical vignettes,” and helpful “clinical pearls” summarizing key information for clinicians working with suicidal individuals."Marnin J. Heisel in Canadian Psychology Review, September 2010

"This book achieves a fine balance between the historical / theoretical / empirical aspects and their clinical utilities. The author articulates with ease insightful information and reflections that join the many different up-to-date aspects of suicidology. [...] Experts engaged in training may find this guidebook useful for developing training manuals relevant to their own clinical settings. [...] This book speaks to mental health professionals in training as well as the experts. In well-presented style, the author takes you through the cornerstones of suicidology systematically."
Sandra Chan, MRCPsych, FHKAM (Psychiatry), FHKCPsych in East Asian Arch Psychiatry 2010, Vol. 20

"As with any of the books in this series, a strong background, complete with terminology and definitions, is provided. What truly stands out is the discussion on risk assessment and the extremely useful take-away information in the many tables throughout the book. The discussion of treatment of suicidal patients has to be the most expansive and detailed on the subject, complete with differences between inpatient and outpatient services. Readers will also appreciate the case vignette and case example at the end of the book. The appendixes on suicide consultation and the decision tree for intervening with suicidal callers are definitely useful tools for practice. Quite simply, this is one of the most essential books you will read this year. Very rarely are books must read, but this is one."
Nicholas Greco IV, MS, BCETS, CATSM, in Doody's Book Review

“...this volume is a masterful piece of work, an optimal mixture of a careful review of the literature and personal experiences written in a didactic, user-friendly way. It must be read by anyone dealing with suicidal individuals.”
Béla Buda, MD, PhD, in Crisis, Vol. 30, 2009

"Summarizing the clinical and scholarly literature on suicidal behavior in fewer than 100 pages is a daunting task. This challenging topic requires accurately portraying the dense web of issues that underlie suicidality. Richard McKeon's 'Suicidal Behavior' succeeds at what would seem to be an impossible task: making the complex clear, leaving nothing important out, and delivering a volume that is well written, thoughtfully organized, and enhanced by vignettes and clinical pearls… 'Suicidal Behavior' is divided into four sections. The first focuses on describing suicidal behavior and includes a discussion of definitional issues. A section on theories and models follows. Section 3 aptly combines risk assessment and treatment planning, eloquently illustrating the connection between the two. Finally, the largest section of the volume is devoted to treatment. In choosing to devote most of his text to treatment, McKeon avoids a common problem in past books on this topic, namely overemphasizing assessment and crisis management at the expense of treatment. He readily acknowledges a limitation of the literature on the psychotherapy of suicidal individuals: There are few clinical trials of interventions aimed at preventing suicides, and effectiveness studies are largely lacking… McKeon's style is refreshingly engaging. He uses brief clinical vignettes effectively to illustrate points, as well as clinical pearls that provide the reader with concrete examples of how to address specific challenges… Berman and his colleagues have convincingly argued that the competent practice of psychotherapy requires solid foundational training in the assessment and management of suicidal behavior, ongoing continuing education on suicidality, and supervision and consultation (Maris, Berman, Silverman, & Bongar, 2000). All clinical psychologists should read and master the contents of Suicidal Behavior. They will be richly rewarded, and lives may be saved."
Marc Hillbrand, PhD, in PsycCRITIQUES, Vol. 54, July 2009

“We are entering a “no nonsense” period of suicidological theorizing and practice, with a substantial emphasis on empirical roots. In these exciting times, Richard McKeon is an indispensable intellectual guide. I was thrilled to read his Suicidal Behavior which spells out, kurz und klar, an easily digestible point of view as to what suicide really is. Get this book!”
Edwin S. Shneidman, PhD, Professor of Thanatology Emeritus UCLA and Founder of the American Association of Suicidology

“Books describing theory and research about suicide are plentiful, but guidebooks providing clinicians with specific, useful counsel on working with suicidal individuals are rare. Richard McKeon has written just such a volume. Suicidal Behavior is a scholarly yet practical manual for mental health service providers of all stripes. It is a remarkably clear and accessible volume, concise yet broad in scope and grounded in solid, current empirical evidence. It will be valued by clinicians at all levels of experience, from trainee to seasoned therapist.”
Thomas E. Ellis, PsyD, ABPP, Professor, Menninger Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Baylor College of Medicine and Associate Director of Psychology, The Menninger Clinic, Houston, TX

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