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The drug lithium is an effective treatment for reducing the risk of suicide and possibly deliberate self harm in people with mood disorders, finds an evidence review published today on bmj.com. The authors say the drug “seems to reduce the risk of death and suicide by more than 60% compared with placebo” and suggest this review “reinforces lithium as an effective agent to reduce the risk of suicide in people with mood disorders.”

BMJ Press Release

Cipriani A, Hawton K, Stockton S, Geddes JR. Lithium in the prevention of suicide in mood disorders: updated systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ. 2013 Jun 27;346:f3646. doi: 10.1136/bmj.f3646.