The choice of weapons in firearm suicides

G. J. Wintemute, S. P. Teret, J. F. Kraus, M. W. Wright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


We report on the firearms used in 235 suicides in Sacramento County, California, during 1983-85. Handguns were used in 69 per cent of firearm suicides - 65 per cent for males, 88 per cent of females - and in all such deaths among women ages 35 and older. We tested the hypothesis that the choice of firearms by persons committing suicide at home would passively reflect the reported prevalence of firearms by type in households in the region. Handguns were used more frequently (rate ratio 2.00; 95% CI = 1.69, 2.39), and rifles and shotguns less frequently than expected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)824-826
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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