Differences Between the Death Rates of Boys and Girls Below the Age of Puberty in Italy. A Century of Change. In this paper the ratio between the death rates of boys and girls in Italy at ages, below 14 years is studied from the end of the nineteenth century. The period can be divided into four stages. Ur.til about 1920 girls were at a disadvantage, the ratio of boys' to girls' mortality fell with age and fell short of unity (excess mortality of girls) after the first birthday. Although infant mortality rates for boys exceeded those of girls, the difference was smaller than could be accounted for by 'biological' factors. From 1920 to 1940, excess mortality of girls was progressively reduced at all ages; by about 1940 the death rates of boys and girls after their first birthday were very similar. Between 1940 and 1980, the advantage of girls increased; excess mortality of boys rose with age, and reached a figure of 80 per cent between the ages of 10 and 14. However, in about 1980 the first signs of a change in trend could be noted ; a situation which was also found in other Western countries. As death rates from infectious diseases and diseases of the digestive system declined, the excess mortality of boys during the first year of life was increasingly caused by perinatal conditions. At ages exceeding one year, the excess mortality of girls during the first decades of the century was largely due to deaths from infectious diseases and from diseases of the digestive system. The reduction in the number of deaths from these diseases led, after 1950, to an increase in the relative importance of accidental deaths, the numbers of which declined relatively slowly, and of deaths from neoplasms which increased in number. Thus, causes of death which had tended to affect girls more than boys became less important, and those which were more important for boys increased. The changed trend after 1980 was due to a reduction in deaths from accidents. Thus, changes in the ratio of death rates of the two sexes can in part be explained by changes in the relative importance of different causes of death. However, it is likely that differences in the up-bringing of boys and girls have also played a part in these changes.

Différences de mortalité par sexe de la naissance à la puberté: un siècle d'èvolution

Mancini P
Writing – Original Draft Preparation
;
1991

Abstract

Differences Between the Death Rates of Boys and Girls Below the Age of Puberty in Italy. A Century of Change. In this paper the ratio between the death rates of boys and girls in Italy at ages, below 14 years is studied from the end of the nineteenth century. The period can be divided into four stages. Ur.til about 1920 girls were at a disadvantage, the ratio of boys' to girls' mortality fell with age and fell short of unity (excess mortality of girls) after the first birthday. Although infant mortality rates for boys exceeded those of girls, the difference was smaller than could be accounted for by 'biological' factors. From 1920 to 1940, excess mortality of girls was progressively reduced at all ages; by about 1940 the death rates of boys and girls after their first birthday were very similar. Between 1940 and 1980, the advantage of girls increased; excess mortality of boys rose with age, and reached a figure of 80 per cent between the ages of 10 and 14. However, in about 1980 the first signs of a change in trend could be noted ; a situation which was also found in other Western countries. As death rates from infectious diseases and diseases of the digestive system declined, the excess mortality of boys during the first year of life was increasingly caused by perinatal conditions. At ages exceeding one year, the excess mortality of girls during the first decades of the century was largely due to deaths from infectious diseases and from diseases of the digestive system. The reduction in the number of deaths from these diseases led, after 1950, to an increase in the relative importance of accidental deaths, the numbers of which declined relatively slowly, and of deaths from neoplasms which increased in number. Thus, causes of death which had tended to affect girls more than boys became less important, and those which were more important for boys increased. The changed trend after 1980 was due to a reduction in deaths from accidents. Thus, changes in the ratio of death rates of the two sexes can in part be explained by changes in the relative importance of different causes of death. However, it is likely that differences in the up-bringing of boys and girls have also played a part in these changes.
infant mortality, child mortality, sex differences
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12070/37690
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