Print version ISSN 0120-4157
LOPEZ, Elizabeth and ARCE, Patricia. A comparison of the causes of adult mortality and its effects on life-expectancy across the regions of Colombia. Biomédica [online]. 2008, vol.28, n.3, pp. 414-422. ISSN 0120-4157.
Introduction. When determining some populations state of health, an understanding of the causes of mortality is essential. Objectives. Changes in mortality due to causes was established to determine their contribution to the life-expectancy by gender and region of the Colombian population aged 15 to 74, between 1985 and 1999, by gender and region. Materials and methods. This was a descriptive, retrospective study; the sources of information were records of deaths from 1983 to 2001 and population projections according to Departamento Administrativo Nacional de Estadística. The age selected as a sample population was 15 to 74. Changes in mortality were measured by using Eduardo Arriagas methodology, which is based on calculating temporary life-expectancy, absolute and relative change indices, and how changes in mortality due to cause of death contribute to life-expectancy. Results. The main cause of reduced temporary life-expectancy in both genders was the increase in deaths by suicide, homicide and other violent causes (the reduction was greater for men than women in all regions studied). The greatest positive contribution to longevity was by the reduction in circulatory system diseases and accidents. Conclusions. A minimal gain in temporary life-expectancy was achieved as the positive affect of reduced mortality due to natural causes. This gain was annulled by the negative contributions of increased mortality due to suicide, homicide and other violent avoidable acts.
Keywords : mortality rate; cause of death; external causes; life expectancy; life tables; Colombia.