Browsing by Subject "ADULT MORTALITY"

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  • Bijwaard, Govert E.; Tynelius, Per; Myrskylae, Mikko (2019)
    Education is negatively associated with most major causes of death. Prior work ignores the premise that cause-specific hazards are interdependent and that both education and mortality depend on cognitive ability. We analyse Swedish men aged 18-63, focusing on months lost due to specific causeswhich solves the interdependence problemand use a structural model that accounts for confounding due to cognitive ability. In a standard Cox model controlling for Intelligence Quotient, improving education is associated with large decreases in mortality for major causes of death. In the structural model, improving education is associated with a small decrease in months lost for most causes and education levels. Among the least educated, however, improving education strongly reduces the months lost, mainly those lost from external causes, such as accidents and suicide. Results suggest that conventional analysis of education and mortality may be biased, even if accounting for observed cognition.
  • Bijwaard, Govert E.; Myrskylä, Mikko; Tynelius, Per; Rasmussen, Finn (2017)
    A negative educational gradient has been found for many causes of death. This association may be partly explained by confounding factors that affect both educational attainment and mortality. We correct the cause-specific educational gradient for observed individual background and unobserved family factors using an innovative method based on months lost due to a specific cause of death re-weighted by the probability of attaining a higher educational level. We use data on men with brothers from the Swedish Military Conscription Registry (1951-1983), linked to administrative registers. This dataset of some 700,000 men allows us to distinguish between five education levels and many causes of death. The empirical results reveal that raising the educational level from primary to tertiary would result in an additional 20 months of survival between ages 18 and 63. This improvement in mortality is mainly attributable to fewer deaths from external causes. The highly educated gain more than nine months due to the reduction in deaths from external causes, but gain only two months due to the reduction in cancer mortality and four months due to the reduction in cardiovascular mortality. Ignoring confounding would lead to an underestimation of the gains by educational attainment, especially for the less educated. Our results imply that if the education distribution of 50,000 Swedish men from the 1951 cohort were replaced with that of the corresponding 1983 cohort, 22% of the person-years that were lost to death between ages 18 and 63 would have been saved for this cohort. (C) 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
  • Barclay, Kieron; Myrskyla, Mikko (2018)
    As parental ages at birth continue to rise, concerns about the effects of fertility postponement on offspring are increasing. Due to reproductive ageing, advanced parental ages have been associated with negative health outcomes for offspring, including decreased longevity. The literature, however, has neglected to examine the potential benefits of being born at a later date. Secular declines in mortality mean that later birth cohorts are living longer. We analyse mortality over ages 30-74 among 1.9 million Swedish men and women born 1938-60, and use a sibling comparison design that accounts for all time-invariant factors shared by the siblings. When incorporating cohort improvements in mortality, we find that those born to older mothers do not suffer any significant mortality disadvantage, and that those born to older fathers have lower mortality. These findings are likely to be explained by secular declines in mortality counterbalancing the negative effects of reproductive ageing.
  • Dudel, Christian; Myrskylae, Mikko (2017)
    A key concern about population aging is the decline in the size of the economically active population. Working longer is a potential remedy. However, little is known about the length of working life and how it relates to macroeconomic conditions. We use the U.S. Health and Retirement Study for 1992-2011 and multistate life tables to analyze working life expectancy at age 50 and study the impact of the Great Recession in 2007-2009. Despite declines of one to two years following the recession, in 2008-2011, American men aged 50 still spent 13 years, or two-fifths of their remaining life, working; American women of the same age spent 11 years, or one-third of their remaining life, in employment. Although educational differences in working life expectancy have been stable since the mid-1990s, racial differences started changing after the onset of the Great Recession. Our results show that although Americans generally work longer than people in other countries, considerable subpopulation heterogeneity exists. We also find that the time trends are fluctuating, which may prove troublesome as the population ages. Policies targeting the weakest performing groups may be needed to increase the total population trends.