(HealthDay)—Males have a higher likelihood of death from injuries and a variety of medical conditions than females among those under 20 years old, according to a study published online Sept. 2 in Pediatrics.
Sheri L. Balsara, from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and colleagues used 1999 to 2008 mortality data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the 2000 Census to compare male and female mortality among those <20 years old.
The researchers found that males were at higher risk of death in all age groups (relative risk [RR], 1.44), among infant deaths for nearly all gestational age groups (RR, 1.12), and in 17 of 19 major disease categories. For seven types of pediatric cancers, males had greater incidence (RR, 1.13), fatality rate (RR, 1.10), and overall mortality (RR, 1.21).
"Males are more likely to die during childhood and adolescence than their female peers from not only injuries but also from a wide variety of medical conditions, suggesting the existence of either a female robustness factor or a male vulnerability factor," Balsara and colleagues conclude.
More information: Abstract