High-Impact Article: Worldwide Burden of Disease Among Youth

June 21, 2018

Article Citation

GBD 2016 Causes of Death Collaborators. Global, Regional, and National Age-Sex Specific Mortality for 264 Causes of Death, 1980-2016: a Systematic Analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study. Lancet. 2017;390:1151-1210.

First Dose

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Note: PRN is featuring this high-impact article as a study with a focus on child health published in the last 24 months that has already been cited by >20 other articles.

Looking at 264 causes of mortality in 195 locations (predominantly countries) from 2006 to 2016, the authors found that numbers of deaths under age 5 years decreased 33% in relative terms during the period but remained substantially higher than numbers of deaths among youth 5-9 years, 10-14 years, 15-19 years, and 20-24 years. Comparative numbers of deaths within the under-5 age group (5 million overall) were higher among neonates 0-27 days old (2.16 million in 2016) than among infants 28-364 days old (1.49 million) and children 1-4 years old (1.35 million) in the countries whose data are presented in the article.

Key Points to Remember

Across all causes of mortality considered over the most recent decade of data available, mortality decreased 28.9% among neonates 0-27 days old, decreased 34.5% among infants 28-364 days old, and decreased 37.2% among children 1-4 years old. Considering broad categories of diseases, the under-5 total deaths decreased the most in relative (%) terms for HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis, by 57.2%, followed by diarrhea/lower respiratory infections/other common infectious diseases (44.7%); the smallest relative decrease (19.9%) was for the category of non-communicable diseases (e.g., congenital birth defects, sudden infant death syndrome). Among infants 28-364 days old, almost one-half of deaths in 2016 were caused by lower respiratory infections (337,700), diarrheal diseases (230,700), and malaria (167,300). Injuries were a greater contributor to deaths among children 1-4 years old than to deaths among infants <1 year old.

Link to Research Article


Summary Author

Matthew M. Davis, MD, MAPP

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