Early life effects across the life course: The impact of individually defined exogenous measures of disease exposure on mortality by sex in 19th- and 20th-century Southern Sweden

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Abstract

Using micro-level longitudinal data from Southern Sweden for 1813 to 1968, this work evaluates the effect of exposure to disease in early life on mortality over the entire life course and separately by sex. The local rates of post-early neonatal mortality are considered indicators of early life disease exposure, and these rates are calculated specifically for each person based on birth date. The loss in median remaining life among exposed individuals who survived to age 1 is 1.1 years for females and 2.1 years for males. Exposed individuals show a cross-over from lower to higher relative mortality as they age. This change occurs in adulthood for males and in old age for females. During adulthood, exposed males present higher rates of death than exposed females. These results are new to the literature and shed light on the importance of adopting a full life course approach and capturing sex differences when evaluating the long-term impacts of early life exposures.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)266-273
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Volume119
Issue numberOnline May 15, 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology

Keywords

  • Early-life
  • Disease-exposure
  • Scarring
  • Selection
  • Life-course
  • Mortality
  • Sweden
  • Historical demography

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