January 12, 2012
Murder Rate Dropping In US, Average Life Expectancy Up
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in its annual report on US mortality, reports a condition known as pneumonitis, a respiratory illness primarily affecting the elderly, replaced murder for the first time in 45 years, as a leading cause of death in the nation, James B. Kelleher reports for Reuters.
Between 2009 and 2010, the average life expectancy increased by about one month from 78.7 years, up from 78.6 years in 2009. The report is based on 98 percent of death certificates from 50 states and the District of Columbia.
The drop in deaths by homicides was expected when the FBI released a preliminary report last month on US crime rates for 2010. Those statistics showed a 7.1 percent drop in murder between January and June, part of a wider drop in violent crime despite the country´s ongoing economic troubles.
Heart disease and cancer still top the list of causes for death in the US, together, writes Laura J. Martin, MD for WebMD. They accounted for 47 percent of all 2.4 million deaths in 2010, the new report shows. The top 15 killers in 2010 are listed below:
1. Heart disease (595,444 deaths)
2. Malignant neoplasms (573,855)
3. Chronic lower respiratory diseases (137,789)
4. Cerebrovascular diseases (129,180)
5. Accidents (118.043)
6. Alzheimer´s disease (83,308)
7. Diabetes (68,905)
8. Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome and nephrosis (50,472)
9. Influenza and pneumonia (50,003)
10. Suicide (37,793)
11. Septicemia (34,843)
12. Chronic liver disease and cirrhosis (31,802)
13. Essential hypertension and hypertensive renal disease (26,577)
14. Parkinson´s disease (21,963)
15. Pneumonitis due to solids of liquids (17,001)
Infant mortality fell 3.9 percent in 2010 to 6.14 infant deaths per 1,000 births from 6.39 deaths per 1,000 births in 2009. However there were increases in other causes of death, such as Alzheimer´s disease, kidney disease, liver disease, Parkinson´s disease, and pneumonitis, the new report showed.
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