Mortality Study of Ten Neurological Diseases in Japan, 1950- 1994.


The present study deals with the secular changes in the death rates from ten neurological diseases using data on vital statistics during the period from 1950 to 1994. Age-adjusted mortality rates from five neurological diseases (Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), spinocerebellar disease (SP), hereditary progressive muscular dystrophy, and myotonic disorders (MD)) increased significantly with the year during the examined period, but mortality rates from motor neuron disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy (CP), epilepsy, and myasthenia gravis decreased significantly with the year. Rising mortality from AD and PD has been the consequence of competitive influences upon AD and PD mortality dynamics. Mortality rate from SP was three times higher in 1994 than in 1979. The improved ascertainment and diagnosis of SP and MD may be explained the increased these death rates. On the other hand, decreased mortality rates from myasthenia gravis, CP, and epilepsy may be a result of improved care or of improved prognosis.
Age-adjusted mortality rates from eight neurological diseases were higher in males than females, but the death rates from AD and myasthenia gravis were higher in females than males in almost every year and age group.
Variations in the age-adjusted death rates among four marital categories were especially observed for hereditary progressive muscular dystrophy, epilepsy, and MD for both sexes. Among both sexes the lowest age-adjusted death rates were observed in married persons and the highest death rates in single persons.
The mean ages at death from nine neurological diseases increased with the year during that period, but the value from hereditary progressive muscular dystrophy remained constant (27 years for males and 40 years for females) during the period from 1968 to 1994.


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