Cause-specific mortality among Israeli adolescents in the 1980s

Rachel Wilf-Miron, Rachel Gurvich, Vita Barell*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Purpose: Considerable mortality occurs during adolescence despite it being a relatively healthy period of life. Nationwide analysis of adolescent mortality data helps identify those sub-groups with higlier-than-expected death rates, that may be amenable to preventive intervention programs. Methods: Adolescent mortality in Israel during 1981-1986 is examined by age (10-14, 15-19 years), sex, population group (Jews, non-Jews), and cause of death. Data were abstracted primarily from special publications for 1981-1986. Recently available mortality updates for 1987-1989 were inspected and significant changes in mortality during the latter period have been included. Results: Among an average of approximately 800,000 adolescents aged 10-19 years living in Israel during 1981-1986, the majority (77%) were Jews. Overall mortality was 36.7 per 100,000. Death rates were almost twice as high for males as for females, increased with age for all population subgroups, and were 63% higher for non-Jews compared with Jews. Accidents were the major cause of death among Israeli adolescents (37.7% of total mortality), with male-to-female rate ratio of 3.4. Mortality from all external causes, including accidents, suicide, homicide, and other external causes accounted for 50.6% of all deaths. Neoplasms were the next major cause of death. Israel and U.S. adolescent mortality rates were compared and showed similar trends. Conclusions: The non-Jewish minority adolescents, and most particularly the males, are at the highest risk of death. Preventive intervention programs should be targeted to the high-risk populations described.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)186-191
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Adolescent Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1994
Externally publishedYes


  • Mortality Adolescence Cause of death High-risk group


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