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The decline in life expectancy in the United States continues with the worst trend of the last 100 years – partly related to drug overdoses and suicides



Americans' average life expectancy dropped another 78.6 years last year, while opioid abuse, suicide and diabetes picked up steam, but heart disease mortality was the leading cause. mortality rate in Canada has stabilized.

Data from recent years indicate a disturbing result that has not been observed in the United States since 1915 until 1918 and which included the First World War and an influenza pandemic. Yet in most other developed countries, life expectancy has steadily increased for decades.

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published Thursday showed that life expectancy had dropped by a tenth of the year, to stand at 78.6 years, because of the largest annual increase in the number of suicides recorded for nearly ten years and a continuous increase in the number of deaths due to opioid drugs. like fentanyl. Influenza, pneumonia and diabetes also contributed to last year's increase.

"Life expectancy gives us insight into the general health of the country, and these disturbing statistics remind us that we are losing too many Americans, too early and too often, to preventable conditions," said Dr. Robert Redfield. CDC. director.

The United States has lost three tenths of a year of life expectancy since 2014, a marked reversal for a developed country. Life expectancy is 84.1 years in Japan and 83.7 years in Switzerland, the first and second most recent ranking of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. The United States ranks 29th on this list.

White men and women experienced the worst situation, as did black men, all of whom experienced an increase in the death rate. Mortality rates have increased particularly among adults aged 25 to 44, and suicide rates are highest among people living in the most rural areas of the country. In addition, deaths declined for black and Hispanic women and remained the same for Hispanic men, according to CDC data.

As usual, women will continue to survive men. In 2016 and 2017, the life expectancy of women was 81.1 years, while that of men increased from 76.2 years in 2016 to 76.1 years in 2017.

The number of drug overdose deaths has exploded between 2015 and 2017, especially among adults aged 25-54. The main culprit was fentanyl and other synthetic opioids that became ubiquitous in the supply of illicit drugs in the United States at that time. Deaths due to synthetic opioids increased by 45% in 2017, while the heroin mortality rate, which rose sharply after 2010, was stable.

Related: Good news in the fight against the opioid epidemic in America

And: State's largest insurer removes OxyContin coverage

In a flash of optimism, the rise in drug overdose deaths was slower in 2017 than the year before. The total number of overdose deaths in the previous 12 months fell slightly between the end of last year and April, although it remains high.

Suicides increased by 3.7% in 2017, accelerating the rate hike since 1999, the CDC said in a report discussing this type of death. The gap between suicide deaths has been drastically widened between cities and most rural areas between 1999 and 2017, according to the data.

Lily: Opioids only partially explain the American "death of despair"

In 2017, the suicide rate in the most rural counties (20 per 100,000) was higher than that in the most urban counties (about 11 per 100,000). The suicide rate in the city in 2017 is 16% higher than in 1999 (about 10 in 100,000), while the suicide rate in the most rural counties in 2017 is 53% higher than in 1999 (about 13 out of 100,000), says the report.

Deaths from heart disease, the leading cause of death in Canada, decreased only slightly, making it impossible to offset the increase in mortality from other causes. Nevertheless, the decline in deaths due to heart disease, seen for decades in anti-smoking campaigns, as well as drugs to control blood pressure and cholesterol, has been declining in recent years. Cancer mortality – the second leading cause of death in the country – has continued to decline since the 1990s.

Do not miss: Doctors simply advise cardiac patients who wish to live longer

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