ATLANTA, May 2 (UPI) -- Over the past 30 years, the rate of suicide among middle-aged U.S. adults rose almost 30 percent, federal health officials said.
The report, published Thursday in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, said more people died of suicide in the United States in 2010 -- 38,364 -- than died of motor vehicle crashes -- 33,687.
The researchers used data on U.S. adults ages 35-64 available through CDC's Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System from 1999-2010. Annual suicide rates for this age group increased 28 percent over the study period -- 13.7 suicides per 100,000 people in 1999 to 17.6 per 100,000 in 2010.
Increases in suicide rates among males and females were also observed from suicides involving hanging/suffocation, poisoning and firearms.
The suicide rates for those ages 10-34 and those age 65 and older did not change significantly during this period, the report said.
"Suicide is a tragedy that is far too common," Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the CDC, said in a statement. "This report highlights the need to expand our knowledge of risk factors so we can build on prevention programs that prevent suicide."
Suicide rates among those ages 35-64 increased 32 percent for women, 27 percent for men, with the greatest increases in suicide rates among those ages 50-54 at 48 percent and those ages 55-59 at 49 percent.