Saturday, October 19th, 2019

Decades-Long Trend of Rising Life Expectancy in U.S. Undergoes Mysterious Reversal

Published on December 11, 2016 by   ·   No Comments

U.S. life expectancy is in decline for the first time since 1993, when HIV-related deaths were at their peak. But this time, researchers can’t identify a single problem driving the drop, and are instead pointing to a number of factors, from heart disease to suicides, that have caused a greater number of deaths.

study (pdf) on mortality rates released Thursday by the National Center for Health Statisticsshowed that Americans could expect to live for 78.8 years in 2015, a decrease of 0.1 from the year before. The overall death rate increased 1.2 percent — that’s about 86,212 more deaths than those recorded in 2014.

— What’s causing the decline?For researchers, the numbers reflect a culmination of problems. Eight of the top 10 causes of death showed an increase in death rates, including those from heart disease, diabetes and kidney disease. Deaths from Alzheimer’s disease rose 15.7 percent, unintentional injuries rose 6.7 percent and suicide rose 2.3 percent.

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