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The following articles have the tag mortality

Crocodile victims rarely die from bite

Crocodile victims rarely die from bite

MOST deaths from crocodile attacks in Australia are due to drowning rather than loss of blood due to trauma, a study shows. The first examination of factors contributing to survival in a saltwater croc attack suggests the body mass of the beast relative to that of the victim is crucial. Northern Territory experts in wildlife management have reviewed the circumstances of 87 of the 109 crocodile attacks in the wild across the Top End since Crocodylus porosus was declared protected in the early 1970s. Twenty-seven unprovoked attacks were fatal and 60 non-fatal. Their research ...

Rather die early than take tablets

Rather die early than take tablets

A DAILY aspirin or statin in exchange for a longer life?

Jogging to an early grave

Jogging to an early grave

SLOW and steady does win the race, it appears, with research showing that slow and moderate joggers live longer than both their fast-paced and sedentary peers.

Laughter, not the best medicine

Laughter, not the best medicine

CONVENTIONAL wisdom tells us that, deep down, clowns are sad.

Type 1 diabetes mortality halved in past 40 years

THE mortality risk borne by people with type 1 diabetes has nearly halved over the past four decades, Australian research shows.

Alarming diabetes rate revealed

ONE Australian adult over 25 develops diabetes every five minutes, the latest Australian Diabetes, Obesity and Lifestyle Study (AusDiab) shows.

High male resting heart rate marker for increased mortality

High male resting heart rate marker for increased mortality

A HIGH resting heart rate is not just a marker of poor fitness; it increases mortality in men up to threefold, regardless of physical fitness, new research shows.

Benzodiazepine use raises risk of pneumonia

Benzodiazepine use raises risk of pneumonia

BENZODIAZEPINES are associated with an increased risk of acquiring pneumonia and of dying from the infection, according to a large study of primary care patients.

Longer tamoxifen treatment cuts breast cancer deaths

EXTENDING tamoxifen treatment to 10 years rather than finishing after five in women with oestrogen receptor-positive breast cancer could reduce mortality rates, researchers claim.

Female non-smokers live 10 years longer than smokers: study

WOMEN who don’t smoke are likely to live for 10 years longer than women smokers, according to findings from the Million Women Study.

Study finds diabetes screening does not reduce mortality

THE benefits of screening for type 2 diabetes could be restricted to individuals with detectable disease, according to a general practice study.

Premature deaths three times higher in people who self-harm

INDIVIDUALS who self-harm are three times more likely to die prematurely than the rest of the population and the increased risk is from natural as well as external causes, a cohort study finds.

Swine flu deaths at more than half a million worldwide

Swine flu deaths at more than half a million worldwide

DEATHS associated with the 2009 H1N1influenza pandemic could be 15 times higher than previously thought, according to estimates from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Coffee drinkers live longer

Coffee drinkers live longer

AFTER years of conflicting research, a big study has found regular or decaf coffee drinkers are a little more likely to live longer.

Drawing test strong predictor for post-stroke mortality

A SIMPLE line drawing test strongly predicts mortality following a first stroke in community-dwelling elderly men, a study shows.

Subclinical hyperthyroidism increases risk of AF

SUBCLINICAL hyperthyroidism (SCH) is associated with a raised risk of incident atrial fibrillation (AF) and with death from coronary heart disease (CHD), a study suggests.

Australia behind the pack in tracking youth binge drinking

Australia behind the pack in tracking youth binge drinking

DESPITE all the concern in Australia about teenage binge drinking, the nation is not even collecting internationally comparable data on the problem, a researcher says.

Mortality risk in adults increased by low health literacy

LOW health literacy significantly increases the risk of mortality in older adults – and it’s more common than thought.

Sleeping pills increase risk of death

MORE data has emerged showing sleeping pills increase the risk of death, prompting researchers to question whether even short-term hypnotic use is “sufficiently safe”.

Half of TIA patients die within nine years

A TRANSIENT ischaemic attack (TIA) confers a relatively high mortality risk, with half of all patients dying within nine years, a major Australian study shows.

Drinking frequency linked to cancer risk

Drinking frequency linked to cancer risk

FREQUENT alcohol consumption increases women’s risk of cancer mortality by nearly a third, a study suggests. The research found high frequency drinking drives the increased risk of all-site cancers among women, whereas among men increased risk is linked to the quantity consumed, with more than three drinks on ‘drinking days’ raising risk by 24%. Pooled data from more than 324,000 US men and women, including more than 8000 cancer deaths, showed there was a mechanism between alcohol and cancer that could be used to counsel patients, addiction specialist Professor Jon Currie said. “GPs don’t have to ...

Longer dialysis interval linked to deaths

UNDERGOING haemodialysis three times a week may be insufficient for optimum survival of patients with end-stage renal disease, a large study suggests. The US review of the records of more than 32,000 patients found mortality was higher in the group with the longest interval between dialysis sessions (two days). The research, funded by the US National Institutes of Health, involved a nationally representative sample of patients – mean age 62 years –  in the End-Stage Renal Disease Clinical Performance Measures Project from 2004 to 2007. After the patients were followed ...

Breast screening not linked to lower mortality

RECENT reductions in breast cancer mortality are likely due to improved medical management rather than screening programs, experts in preventive health say after an international study. Researchers from France, the UK and Norway investigated the impact of mammography programs by comparing trends in breast cancer mortality among pairs of similar countries where one introduced mammographic screening 10–15 years before the other one. A reduction in breast cancer mortality would be expected to manifest sooner in countries with earlier screening programs, but this was not borne out by the study, they said. ...

Youth often neglected in public health policy to prevent disease and death

PUBLIC health experts are calling for targeted interventions to reduce the burden of disease, injury and death in young people worldwide. These include redesigning cars and providing better access to contraception. According to an editorial accompanying an analysis of the global burden of disease in young people, published in The Lancet today, health promotion and a concerted effort to prevent disease in people aged 10–24 years are essential. Worldwide, the three main causes of years lost because of disability for 10- to 24-year-olds were neuropsychiatric disorders (45%), unintentional injuries (12%), and infectious and parasitic diseases ...

Palliative care in hospital a ‘waste of money’

THE majority of elderly Australians spend their final days in a hospital, but that’s just “bad care” and a waste of money, according to an editorial in the Medical Journal of Australia . The editorial pointed to a WA-based study that showed of 1000 elderly patients living in the community with a condition “amenable to palliative care”, all but 4% spent some time in hospital during their final year of life. Seventy per cent had at least one emergency presentation during the year, while almost two-thirds (61.5%) were in hospital the day they died. “Palliative ...

Diabetes drugs linked to increased CV risk

THE TGA is considering whether additional precautions are warranted for a number of the sulfonylureas within the class of insulin secretagogues, following a study suggesting they are associated with increased mortality and cardiovascular risk. A TGA spokesperson said findings from the European Heart Journal study, comparing insulin secretagogue monotherapy with metformin, were being reviewed. The Danish authors followed more than 100,000 subjects who had received insulin secretagogues or metformin for nine years. They found increased all-cause mortality, cardiovascular death, and a composite of myocardial infarction, stroke and cardiovascular death, associated with all of the ...

Mortality rates for women higher in rural Australia, study shows

WOMEN living in rural Australia have higher mortality rates than their city sisters, a study shows. Data from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health shows women in the bush are in double jeopardy from an environment that has more health risks and poorer access to medical services. The study of 12,400 women aged 40-75 shows particular diseases, including ischaemic heart disease, lung cancer and COPD, are more likely to claim rural women. As there are few differences between risk factors such as obesity, physical activity and smoking in rural compared to urban women, the authors suggest the ...

Study finds protective benefits of fish oil after MI are limited

ADDING fish oil supplements to current guideline-based treatments following acute myocardial infarction (MI) does not offer any additional reduction in further cardiovascular events. A German multicentre trial, involving 3851 patients with MI, found treatment with standard therapies such as statins and beta-blockers lowered mortality rates, non-fatal reinfarction and/or stroke, after a year of follow-up. However, randomisation to 1 g/day of omega-3 fish oil for one year in addition to standard treatment did not significantly lower major cardiovascular events any further.  The study showed similar rates (1.5%) of sudden cardiac death in both the fish oil and control ...

Getting a grip on death risk is all in a handshake

MOVE over risk calculators: predicting someone’s chance of dying could be as simple as shaking their hand. That’s according to British researchers, who found a significant correlation between grip strength and mortality.  Walking speed and ability to rise from a chair are also significant predictors of early mortality, according to the team from University College in London. They argued that physical capabilities would gain more attention in future, as research studies were increasingly including them as markers of “multi-system” functioning. However, they also cautioned against their use as a screening tool for mortality risk given the ...

Better treatment reducing liver disease deaths in hep B

IMPROVEMENTS in treatment have likely reduced deaths from liver disease in people with hepatitis B infection, Sydney researchers say. However, people with HBV still have an elevated risk of death and those with hepatitis C have more than double the risk compared to the rest of the population in NSW, the 7 th Australasian Viral Hepatitis Conference was told. A study by the National Centre in HIV Epidemiology and Clinical Research compared mortality among more than 42,000 HBV cases and more than 82,000 HCV cases notified in NSW over 15 years. People co-infected with HBV ...

Relationships really do sustain us

A STRONG social network has been shown to be just as important as other health risk factors in reducing the risk of death. US researchers have quantified the effect of social support on mortality, concluding it is just as significant as factors such as smoking and obesity. A review of 148 studies involving more than 300,000 people followed for an average 7.5 years found strong social bonds conferred a 50% increased likelihood of survival compared to weaker relationships. The researchers found social relationships were most predictive of reduced mortality risk in studies assessing density of social ...

Vitamin D link to death in type 2 diabetes patients

EVIDENCE is growing to suggest that severe vitamin D deficiency significantly increases the risk of death in patients with type 2 diabetes. Fifteen-year follow-up of a group of Danish patients found that those with plasma vitamin D levels below 13.9 nmol/L – the lowest 10% percentile – faced double the risk of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. The increased risk persisted even after adjustment for diabetes duration, HbA1c, kidney function and cardiovascular risk factors. Researchers followed up 289 hospital outpatients – 196 of whom died over the study period. Although causality remains unproven, they said the ...

Anxiety a predictor for cardiac death

ANXIETY can be confirmed as an independent risk factor for coronary heart disease (CHD) and cardiac mortality, Australian experts say, after a meta-analysis found it was strongly associated with these outcomes. The review of 20 prospective studies, including 249,846 ‘healthy’ persons, found those with anxiety disorders had a 26% higher risk of CHD and a 48% higher risk of cardiac mortality. The results were independent of demographic variables, biological risk factors and health behaviours. The findings were further bolstered by a Swedish study of 49,321 men followed for 37 years, which found those with anxiety at ...

Beta-blockers benefit COPD patients

BETA-BLOCKERS are not only safe for patients with COPD, but may reduce exacerbations and mortality, which contrasts with previous concerns they might provoke bronchospasm and induce respiratory failure.  A Dutch 10-year observational study of 2230 general practice patients with COPD has found that those using beta-blockers had mortality and exacerbations reduced by nearly a third compared with patients who had not received them. The reduction in mortality and exacerbations was still around 35% even after adjusting for age, current and former smoking, history of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes and use of other cardiovascular drugs. Professor Christine ...

Beta-blockers benefit COPD patients

BETA-BLOCKERS are not only safe for patients with COPD, but may reduce exacerbations and mortality, which contrasts with previous concerns they might provoke bronchospasm and induce respiratory failure.  A Dutch 10-year observational study of 2230 general practice patients with COPD has found that those using beta-blockers had mortality and exacerbations reduced by nearly a third compared with patients who had not received them. The reduction in mortality and exacerbations was still around 35% even after adjusting for age, current and former smoking, history of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes and use of other cardiovascular drugs. Professor Christine ...

Osteoporosis treatment minimises premature death risk

EFFECTIVE osteoporosis treatment can significantly reduce premature mortality among higher risk patients, a study has confirmed. A major international meta-analysis, including 10 studies with 39,549 patients, found there was a 10% reduction in premature death due to fracture, illness and injury among older, frailer people at high risk of fracture. The reduction in mortality was not related to age or fracture incidence. At a recent seminar in Sydney, Australian experts believed the findings were a reminder for clinicians of the importance of early diagnosis and treatment initiation in patients with osteoporosis. Professor Philip Sambrook, director ...

CRP screens may identify risk of premature death

SCREENING for elevated C-reactive protein (CRP) levels could identify patients at risk of premature death, new research suggests.  The Danish study in 10,388 participants found elevated CRP levels (over 3 mg/L) were associated with a two-fold increased risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease, cancer and other causes compared to CRP levels less than 1 mg/L after 16 years’ follow-up.  “However, this does not appear to be a causal association for [CRP] per se but more likely reflects association of hidden, potentially fatal inflammatory disease with increased all-cause mortality,” the authors said.  It had been unclear whether ...

Children from asbestos town more likely to die of cancer

PEOPLE who lived as children in the former asbestos mining town of Wittenoom, Western Australian, have up to four times the cancer death rate of the general WA population, a new study shows. Professor Bill Musk and Associate Professor Alison Reid, from the University of Western Australia, examined 228 deaths in a cohort of 2500 people who spent the first years of their life in Wittenoom. Although the children would have had less asbestos exposure than the miners, 40 of them (17%) have died from malignant mesothelioma, Professor Musk told the annual scientific meeting of the Thoracic ...

Reduced long-term mortality risk with use of oral contraceptive pill

WOMEN who use the oral contraceptive pill have a reduced risk of mortality from cancer and other diseases in middle to old age, evidence suggests. More than a million women years of data from a general practice study in the UK showed that while Pill users younger than 30 years had a three-fold higher rate of death, this changes by the age of 50 years.  Ever-users were less likely to die from gynaecological and colorectal cancers, ischaemic heart disease, circulatory disease and hundreds of other disorders. The study, which has up to 39 years of follow-up, gives ...