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(Outside the Beltway)   How we died in 2010 compared to how we died in 1900. Yeah, western medicine totally hasn't done anything for us   (outsidethebeltway.com) divider line 86
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8602 clicks; posted to Geek » on 22 Jun 2012 at 1:35 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-06-22 11:17:05 AM
Damn.

Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?
 
2012-06-22 11:30:39 AM
Is someone actually making the argument that western medicine hasn't done anything for us? Or is this just some ridiculous strawman because submitter once overheard some hippie talking about earwax candles and ginseng at a mall kiosk?
 
2012-06-22 11:31:37 AM

Aarontology: Damn.

Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?


Or, is it because we're living longer, therefore more likely to get it?

I also note that suicide doesn't even show up for 1900 (maybe because they weren't keeping those records?)
 
2012-06-22 11:39:24 AM
www.dph.com
Now they need to show a costs chart that adjusts for inflation. That could help explain the suicide rate.
 
2012-06-22 11:44:49 AM
b-b-b-but Vaccines!
 
2012-06-22 11:45:30 AM

dj_bigbird: Or, is it because we're living longer, therefore more likely to get it?


That's a possibility too. I didn't think of that.

I also note that suicide doesn't even show up for 1900 (maybe because they weren't keeping those records?)

Maybe. Maybe they were classified as accidents since there was a far higher stigma about it back then?
 
2012-06-22 11:51:42 AM

Aarontology: Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?


Probably a bit of that, but also probably because if you were prone to cancer, you were picked off by any of the other mortality incidents way before.
 
2012-06-22 11:53:09 AM
Another interesting way to skew this statistic - they should adjust it to be percentages of total population. There are way more people now, so the improvement by percentage should be even greater.
 
2012-06-22 11:53:35 AM

Angry Drunk Bureaucrat: Aarontology: Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?

Probably a bit of that, but also probably because if you were prone to cancer, you were picked off by any of the other mortality incidents way before.


Yeah. The TB is a cruel mistress.
 
2012-06-22 11:57:29 AM

Aarontology: Damn.

Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?


Because we live long enough for things like cancer to kill us.
 
2012-06-22 11:58:36 AM

Aarontology: Yeah. The TB is a cruel mistress.


Now that Totally Drug Resistant Tuberculosis is here, it can make the splashy comeback it always wanted.
 
2012-06-22 12:01:23 PM

RexTalionis: Aarontology: Yeah. The TB is a cruel mistress.

Now that Totally Drug Resistant Tuberculosis is here, it can make the splashy comeback it always wanted.


Dammit, I hate sequels.
 
2012-06-22 12:07:49 PM
*cough*
 
2012-06-22 12:29:05 PM

Aarontology: Damn.

Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?


I've always assumed it was a bit of both, plus we simply live longer so cancer is more likely to strike just from increased total radiation. Basically that cancer is the side effect of living long.
 
2012-06-22 12:30:10 PM

GAT_00: I've always assumed it was a bit of both, plus we simply live longer so cancer is more likely to strike just from increased total radiation. Basically that cancer is the side effect of living long.


Maybe, but there are a lot of cancers that hit middle aged people now. Though I suppose the heart disease part covers a lot of those.
 
2012-06-22 12:34:05 PM

Aarontology: GAT_00: I've always assumed it was a bit of both, plus we simply live longer so cancer is more likely to strike just from increased total radiation. Basically that cancer is the side effect of living long.

Maybe, but there are a lot of cancers that hit middle aged people now. Though I suppose the heart disease part covers a lot of those.


That may be a general argument that radiation levels commonly seen today from electronic are unhealthy. Or it could be people with weaker immune systems who used to die in childhood getting cancer since they are less able to fight it.

This is just my own speculation though. I haven't ever looked over medical literature. It's impossible to understand.
 
2012-06-22 01:07:54 PM

DarkJohnson: Another interesting way to skew this statistic - they should adjust it to be percentages of total population. There are way more people now, so the improvement by percentage should be even greater.


You realize that since it's per 100,000 it is, by definition, a percentage, right? So 192.9/100,000 is .1929%

Now, it seems like there's something wrong with the chart if those are out of 100,000, because I thought heart disease accounted for a lot more than 0.19% of all deaths. Am I mis-reading something here?
 
2012-06-22 01:09:32 PM
I suspect I know the answer to the question I posed: the chart isn't per/100k deaths, but per 100k people alive, how many will die of that in a given year, perhaps?
 
2012-06-22 01:27:34 PM

RexTalionis: Aarontology: Damn.

Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?

Because we live long enough for things like cancer to kill us.


My doctor who I just visited told me that if I were to live to be 150 I have a 100% chance of getting cancer. I imagine he's doubling the 1 in 2 chance of getting it by age 75 *average life span*

In regards to diagnosis you have to consider that the country was a far different place in 1900. There were two schools of medicine.. Allopathy and Homeopathy and scientific medicine was relegated to a few small shops like Johns Hopkins. The diagnoses given were by people who practiced these antiquated forms of medicine or were caretakers who were also schooled in that kind of thing. Until Rockefeller (a devout homeopath btw) started sinking metric assloads of money into "Scientific Medicine" in the early 1900s Cancer was only known by a small portion of practitioners. By 1915 or so we start seeing the upper class and urban residents getting diagnosed with various (though many still unknown) types of cancer.

To break it down.. If you worked in a coal mine and started coughing up blood the homeopathic doctors at the time would give you minute (irrelevant) portions of coal to fight off the cough. Even though you have lung cancer.. You would not be diagnosed with lung cancer because it wasn't known to exist at the time.
 
2012-06-22 01:41:03 PM
I didn't realize that senility used to be directly lethal rather than leading to health neglect.
 
2012-06-22 01:43:38 PM
I'd be interested to see that chart with murders and executions thrown in. Are we killing a higher or lower percentage of people now than 100 years ago?
 
2012-06-22 01:44:00 PM
Aarontology: Damn.

Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?


If you died of Small pox, or TB, or dysentery, or some other such disease you aren't gonna live long enough to get teh cancer
 
2012-06-22 01:44:51 PM

Aarontology: Damn.

Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?


It has to do with a lot of things. Our healthcare is better, our lives are longer, and we don't die of the things listed in the 1900 stack nearly as often.
 
2012-06-22 01:44:56 PM
"Run over by a wagon, TB and Lizzie Borden"

"Name the top three killers of 1900"

/HEYOOOO!
//got nuthin
 
2012-06-22 01:45:11 PM

Teufelaffe: I'd be interested to see that chart with murders and executions thrown in. Are we killing a higher or lower percentage of people now than 100 years ago?


I'd wager exeutions are way lower. Per 100,000, I'd wager we're higher on murders.
 
2012-06-22 01:45:30 PM
It's cool to see the effect evidence-based medicine has.

Instead of dying from diseases with have been eradicated thanks to vaccines, we're dying later in life, from diseases that are a result of old age.
 
2012-06-22 01:52:07 PM

rustypouch: It's cool to see the effect evidence-based medicine has.

Instead of dying from diseases with have been eradicated thanks to vaccines, we're dying later in life, from diseases that are a result of old age.


Also, a lot of today's diseases are probably related to a lot of the processed foods we eat, and are next to impossible to avoid in today's cultures. Many people strongly believe that cancer/diabetes/heart disease/etc. are linked to the things we put in their body. Can't say I disagree.
 
2012-06-22 01:52:41 PM

RexTalionis: Aarontology: Yeah. The TB is a cruel mistress.

Now that Totally Drug Resistant Tuberculosis is here, it can make the splashy comeback it always wanted.


She had TB but still she had to keep singing.
 
2012-06-22 01:52:48 PM

rustypouch: It's cool to see the effect evidence-based medicine has.

Instead of dying from diseases with have been eradicated thanks to vaccines, we're dying later in life, from diseases that are a result of old age.


Or just simply old age.. My grandfather just died a few weeks ago at the ripe age of 93 without getting any cancer or any other problem other than organs starting to get old. Died of old age. My other grandfather is still pumping along at 90 and has never had surgery for anything. He's active in his garden, makes his own wine, still mows his lawn and runs his tractor like he was a kid. Fingers crossed I might live to 100 and be healthy while doing it. With all the advances we're making in stem cells who knows how long we'll all have to put up with each other.
 
2012-06-22 02:01:23 PM

Ricardo Klement: I suspect I know the answer to the question I posed: the chart isn't per/100k deaths, but per 100k people alive, how many will die of that in a given year, perhaps?


Yes, it's the death rate per year per 100k population. The overall death rate is about 600/100k population/year according to that, so the percentage of deaths in a given year caused by heart disease would be 192.9/600, so more like 32%.

I wonder how much of that high cardio/cancer/non-infectious respiratory mortality can be linked to smoking and obesity.
 
2012-06-22 02:02:25 PM

Ricardo Klement: Now, it seems like there's something wrong with the chart if those are out of 100,000, because I thought heart disease accounted for a lot more than 0.19% of all deaths. Am I mis-reading something here?


It appears to be deaths per 100000 population, not cause of death per 100000 deaths. That is, in 2010, there were 798.7 deaths per 100000 on average. Of those 787.7, 192.9 were heart disease, or nearly 25%.

This chart, from the article TFA cites, may be more illuminating (and it's cooler).

dj_bigbird: Aarontology: Damn.

Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?

Or, is it because we're living longer, therefore more likely to get it?

I also note that suicide doesn't even show up for 1900 (maybe because they weren't keeping those records?)


From the chart above, one can infer (perhaps inaccurately) that there wasn't much record keeping on suicides before the 1970's.
 
2012-06-22 02:05:38 PM

johnnyq: This chart, from the article TFA cites, may be more illuminating (and it's cooler).


That chart is way better.
 
2012-06-22 02:08:40 PM
Interesting that as the article says, diseases that were slightly lower in occurence in 1900 are now killing more people due to us living longer. The price of living longer is that life always finds a way to kill us.

So when we start to eradicate heart disease and cancer to a great degree, perhaps neurological diseases will become the bigger killer. After all, the brain is the most complicated part of us and if we can't make the body live on for longer, the brain might be the only thing left to deteriorate. I bet a comparison graph in 2100 will prove quite interesting.

/Not that I'll most likely get to see it
 
2012-06-22 02:09:10 PM

johnnyq: Ricardo Klement: Now, it seems like there's something wrong with the chart if those are out of 100,000, because I thought heart disease accounted for a lot more than 0.19% of all deaths. Am I mis-reading something here?



This chart, from the article TFA cites, may be more illuminating (and it's cooler).


Forgot to mention a couple interesting points in the link: the massive uptick for influenza due to the 1918 Spanish flu, and the fact that Syphilis was a common enough cause of death through the 1920's that it gets its own entry and ticks on the graph.
 
2012-06-22 02:09:48 PM

The sound of one hand clapping: Interesting that as the article says, diseases that were slightly lower in occurence in 1900 are now killing more people due to us living longer. The price of living longer is that life always finds a way to kill us.

So when we start to eradicate heart disease and cancer to a great degree, perhaps neurological diseases will become the bigger killer. After all, the brain is the most complicated part of us and if we can't make the body live on for longer, the brain might be the only thing left to deteriorate. I bet a comparison graph in 2100 will prove quite interesting.

/Not that I'll most likely get to see it


I predict cannibalism will be the number one cause of death. And boredom.
 
2012-06-22 02:12:59 PM
Deaths per 100,000? Surely that must be around 100,000.
 
2012-06-22 02:25:08 PM

Dictatorial_Flair: The sound of one hand clapping: Interesting that as the article says, diseases that were slightly lower in occurence in 1900 are now killing more people due to us living longer. The price of living longer is that life always finds a way to kill us.

So when we start to eradicate heart disease and cancer to a great degree, perhaps neurological diseases will become the bigger killer. After all, the brain is the most complicated part of us and if we can't make the body live on for longer, the brain might be the only thing left to deteriorate. I bet a comparison graph in 2100 will prove quite interesting.

/Not that I'll most likely get to see it

I predict cannibalism bath salts will be the number one cause of death. And boredom.


FTFY
 
2012-06-22 02:28:51 PM
People didn't just start recently living longer. A 100 years ago it was not uncommon to live 70 or 80 years. If you made it past infancy and didn't die in a war you could live a long life. Go look at some old head stones. Or talk to some really old people that aren't looney.

I have nothing against modern medicine. It's why more people make past infancy today.

Most of the cancers are coming from the crap we eat and the air we breath. Not all, but most...
 
2012-06-22 02:30:14 PM

sigdiamond2000: Is someone actually making the argument that western medicine hasn't done anything for us? Or is this just some ridiculous strawman because submitter once overheard some hippie talking about earwax candles and ginseng at a mall kiosk?trolling the fark out of me?


FTFY
 
2012-06-22 02:32:40 PM

sigdiamond2000: Is someone actually making the argument that western medicine hasn't done anything for us? Or is this just some ridiculous strawman because submitter once overheard some hippie talking about earwax candles and ginseng at a mall kiosk?


Haven't you ever talked to an anti-vaxxer? Or someone who just got into acupuncture?
 
2012-06-22 02:35:36 PM
Obviously, some people committed suicide and died of other causes in 1900 - the 1900 bar isn't including all causes of death, just ones that are above a certain rate. So don't look at it and think, "wow, people are committing suicide a whole lot more today!" I'd be willing to bet, if anything, that the suicide rate was higher back then.

Also, people die of cancer and heart disease more because now we live long enough to get cancer and heart disease...because we didn't die at age 30 of Tuberculosis.

I wonder, does 'senility' in 1900 include Alzheimer's disease?
 
2012-06-22 02:35:51 PM
But but but life extension is bad!
But we sure like to use all the benefits we take for granted though!!!
 
2012-06-22 02:39:51 PM

RexTalionis: Aarontology: Yeah. The TB is a cruel mistress.

Now that Totally Drug Resistant Tuberculosis is here, it can make the splashy comeback it always wanted.


Hey, it's a sexy disease. I'm not kidding - in the 1900's women with 'consumption' were considered to have a sexual allure to them. There have been several scholarly articles speculating as to why, but you're better off just watching Verdi's La Traviata.
 
2012-06-22 02:43:26 PM

This About That: Deaths per 100,000? Surely that must be around 100,000.


Pretty sure that's deaths per year out of a random 100,000 person sample.
 
2012-06-22 02:45:50 PM

sigdiamond2000: Is someone actually making the argument that western medicine hasn't done anything for us? Or is this just some ridiculous strawman because submitter once overheard some hippie talking about earwax candles and ginseng at a mall kiosk?


They must be women suffering from hysteria. They should go have the doctor give them some orgasms.
 
2012-06-22 02:59:51 PM
Apparently some people can't read sarcasm in a headline.

Back on topic, you can see the huge impact of penicillin and other antibiotics. If you got pneumonia or other infections back then, all they could do was keep you comfortable and wait to see if you died.
 
2012-06-22 03:00:42 PM

dj_bigbird: Aarontology: Damn.

Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?

Or, is it because we're living longer, therefore more likely to get it?


Mostly it is the increased life-span and better diagnostic abilities. There are some cancers of course that are more frequent now for environmental reasons of course but the other two factors likely outweight them.

Spaceballer: People didn't just start recently living longer. A 100 years ago it was not uncommon to live 70 or 80 years. If you made it past infancy and didn't die in a war you could live a long life. Go look at some old head stones. Or talk to some really old people that aren't looney.


There are different ways to calculate and express life-expectancies. Yes the bulk of the difference between now and 1900 in the straight average is due to lower infant mortality rates; but there are also stats used like average life-expectancy at 13 (or 18, 20, 30, etc) where you drop all of the people below that age from the equation. Basically if you survive to adulthood what is the average life-expectancy. And that is significantly higher now than it was in 1900 as well.
 
2012-06-22 03:02:47 PM

Aarontology: Is that massive uptick of cancer because people are getting cancer far more frequently, or because they didn't have proper diagnoses back then?


Most likely because cancer is a disease you generally get in old age. I'm sure a *ton* of people back in the 1900's would have eventually had cancer if they lived long enough.

Cancer is kind-of the "end result" disease. After we cure everything else, you're going to die of something. Live long enough, and chances are its going to be cancer more often than not.

I'd posit if we somehow eliminated every other cause of death... a HUGE percentage of people would eventually get cancer. Maybe by age 120 or whatever, but eventually.
 
2012-06-22 03:09:31 PM

BSABSVR: Or someone who just got into acupuncture?


I'm torn on acupuncture. I don't believe it cures anything. I don't believe there's like a spot on your foot that when pricked cures ailments in your stomach.

But I've done it, and its pretty relaxing in a strange way. Helps with stress and anxiety. I can't relax or meditate well, and it totally helped. Placebo? Maybe... but whatever.

Now... once you get into "stopping you from smoking" and the like.... no.
 
2012-06-22 03:15:00 PM
Yeah but air travel was safer back then
 
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