Trends in age-specific mortality (10-year age groups, 5-74) for the U.S. population were reviewed for all causes of death from 1960 to 1980. The age-specific mortality rate generally declined. However, the following age-sex-color groups showed divergent mortality trends compared to those of other groups: (1) The death rates for white male teenagers and young adults (ages 15-24 and 25-34) increased during 1960s and stayed at the same level during 1970s. The ratio of male to female deaths for white teenagers and young adults (15-24 and 25-34) increased over both decades, although the mortality rate for white women age 15-24 increased during the 1960s. (2) Non-white men age 15-24 and 25-34 experienced biphasic mortality trends, with a rise peaking in 1971 and then a fall. (3) The mortality ratios, non-white to white men, age 25-34 and 35-44, were far higher then those of other age groups. (4) The mortality ratios, non-white males to females, increased steadily for all age groups, and those of age groups 15-24 and 25-34 turned up sharply. Selected causes of death (1960-1977) were reviewed to uncover reasons for the unfavorable mortality trends among males. The following causes contributed to rising mortality among males: (a) accidents, suicide, and homicide for white and non-white teenagers and young adults, age 15-24, 25-34 and 35-44; (b) suicide and homicide for non-white men age 45-54; (c) cirrhosis of the liver for white men age 35-44 and for non-white 25-34, 35-44 and 45-54; (d) malignant neoplasms for white men age 35-44 and for non-white age 45-54.
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