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Experience of Sibling Death in Childhood and Risk of Death in Adulthood: A National Cohort Study From Sweden
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Centre for Health Equity Studies (CHESS).
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Centre for Health Equity Studies (CHESS).
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Number of Authors: 52017 (English)In: American Journal of Epidemiology, ISSN 0002-9262, E-ISSN 1476-6256, Vol. 185, no 12, p. 1247-1254Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Although there is some evidence of an association between loss of a sibling in adulthood and subsequentmortality, there have been no previous studies in which investigators have examined whether the death of a sibling in childhood is associated with adult mortality using total population data. Data on a national cohort born in Sweden in 1973-1982 (n = 717,723) were prospectively collected from the Cause of Death Register until 2013 (i.e., from the ages of 18 years to 31-40 years). Cox proportional hazards models were used to analyze the association between sibling loss during childhood and death in young adulthood. After adjustment for sociodemographic confounders and parental psychosocial covariates, the hazard ratio for all-cause mortality in bereaved siblings versus nonbereaved siblings was 1.39 (95% confidence interval: 1.14, 1.69). Risks were more pronounced for those who lost a noninfant sibling (i.e., > 1 year of age) (hazard ratio = 1.53, 95% confidence interval: 1.18, 1.95) and those who lost a sibling in adolescence (i.e., between the ages of 12 and 18 years) (hazard ratio = 1.71, 95% confidence interval: 1.24, 2.35). Excess mortality risk was found for concordant causes of death (i. e., siblings dying from the same causes) but not for discordant causes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 185, no 12, p. 1247-1254
Keywords [en]
bereavement, grief, mortality, register, sibling, stress, Sweden
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-145213DOI: 10.1093/aje/kww126ISI: 000404383400006OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-145213DiVA, id: diva2:1128796
Available from: 2017-07-28 Created: 2017-07-28 Last updated: 2017-07-28Bibliographically approved

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Rostila, MikaelBerg, LisaHjern, Anders
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