Age patterns of mortality for older women: An analysis using the age-specific rate of mortality change with age. (English) Zbl 0875.92063

Summary: The age-specific rate of mortality change with age, defined by \(k(x)= d\ln \mu(x)/dx\), where \(\mu(x)\) is the age-specific death rate at exact age \(x\), is estimated for middle and old ages in ten selected populations that are considered to have relatively accurate age data. For females in each of the study populations, \(k(x)\) follows a bell-shaped curve that usually peaks around age 75. In some of the populations, the age pattern of \(k(x)\) for males is confounded with substantial cohort variations, which seem to reflect long-term impacts of their World War I experiences. Among the mathematical models proposed by Gompertz, Makeham, Perks and Beard, only the Perks model is consistent with the bell-shaped pattern of \(k(x)\). It is shown that, if the risk of death for every individual follows the Makeham equation and if the individual frailty is gamma-distributed, then the age-specific death rate follows the Perks equation.


91D20 Mathematical geography and demography
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