A systematic review of the studies testing the integrated motivational-volitional model of suicidal behaviour

Souza, Kenvil and Sosu, Edward M. and Thomson, Scott and Rasmussen, Susan (2024) A systematic review of the studies testing the integrated motivational-volitional model of suicidal behaviour. Health Psychology Review. pp. 1-25. ISSN 1743-7199 (https://doi.org/10.1080/17437199.2024.2336013)

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Despite the influence of the integrated motivational-volitional (IMV)1 model on research and practice, the supporting literature has not been systematically synthesised. This systematic review aims to synthesise the literature testing the IMV model of suicidal behaviour. Using citation and database searching, PsycINFO, EMBASE, PubMed, Web of Science, and Google Scholar were searched for studies referencing the IMV model (last searched on 28th March 2023). Included studies empirically tested the hypotheses of the model. Quality assessment was conducted using the National Institute of Health tool. Findings from 98 records (100 studies, 138,365 participants) were narratively synthesised. Results from studies directly testing the hypothesised pathways of the model supported the defeat-entrapment-suicidal ideation pathway of the IMV model. Case–control studies comparing differences between control, ideation, and enactment groups were consistent with hypotheses in univariate and cross-sectional analyses. However, support for the model was mixed for case–control multivariate and prospective studies. Due to low overlap in variables studied, the role of specific pre-motivational phase variables and stage-specific moderators was inconclusive. The studies received overall good quality ratings. The IMV model presents a promising framework for understanding and preventing suicide. Defeat, entrapment, and key variables may be useful in informing suicide prevention measures.