This study explores familial psychiatric risk factors that are closely linked to suicide risk among patients with opioid use disorder (OUD) as measured by the Family History Assessment Module (FHAM). Data was derived from adults diagnosed with OUD (N = 389). To analyze the covariance between the 11 items of the FHAM, principal component analysis was applied to infer principal components (PC) scores. Log-binominal regression was conducted to quantify the associations between PC scores and mental health symptoms (e.g., lifetime suicidal attempt, P30D suicidal ideation, depression, and anxiety). Analyses revealed that the first 3 three PCs could account for 56% of the total variance of the FHAM items within the data. Family history of substance misuse (PC1) was positively associated with lifetime suicide attempts and severe anxiety. Family history of serious mental illness (PC2) and of suicidal behavior (PC3) were not significantly associated with any outcomes. Our findings suggest current suicide risk is associated with an array of familial psychiatric issues among people with OUD. However, family history of suicide attempts and death by suicide has less bearing on current suicide risk in OUD patients whereas family history of substance use confers significant risk. Findings underscore suicide-related preventive interventions as necessary components of treatment plans among people with OUD, who commonly report family histories of substance misuse.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-13
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Psychiatric Research
StatePublished - Mar 2023


  • Family medical histories
  • Opioid use disorder
  • Principal component analyses
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Suicide attempt


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