Is Parkinson death rate increasing?

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Here is a report that more than twice as many Americans dying from Parkinson disease in 2019 (35,311) compared with 1999 (14,593). The study was published in the November 16, 2021, issue of Neurology.

Using data obtained from the National Vital Statistics System of the National Center for Health Statistics, the researchers calculated a total of 479,059 U.S. deaths from Parkinson disease between 1999 and 2019.

The age-adjusted death rate nearly double in 20 years, from 1999 to 2019. There was an average annual increase of 2.4% over the two decades.

Parkinson disease mortality increased significantly in all age groups, sexes, and racial and ethnic groups, as well as in urban and rural locations. There were, however, several notable differences within these categories. Mortality rates for men were twice those for women throughout the study period. Also, White individuals had higher mortality rates than people from other racial or ethnic groups which implies there is some genetic aspect.

The scientists speculate that that increased exposure to pesticides, herbicides, heavy metals, and air pollution, could raise Parkinson disease risk. However a doubling death rate would mean a rather obvious change in environment The scientists speculate that as people are living longer, thereby contributing to higher Parkinson disease incidence and mortality. Yet in US the life expectancy didn't increase during that period.

Most patients die with Parkinson’s Disease and not from it. The illnesses that kill most people are the same as those that kill people with PD. These are heart conditions, stroke and cancer. As we age we become increasingly aware that more than one bad thing can happen to our bodies.

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