International Journal of Biometeorology

, Volume 51, Issue 2, pp 145–153

Temperature-related mortality in France, a comparison between regions with different climates from the perspective of global warming

  • Mohamed Laaidi
  • Karine Laaidi
  • Jean-Pierre Besancenot
Original Article

Abstract

This paper aims to explain the results of an observational population study that was carried out between 1991 and 1995 in six regions (departments) in France. The study was to assess the relationship between temperature and mortality in a few areas of France that offer widely varying climatic conditions and lifestyles, to determine their thermal optimum, defined as a 3°C temperature band with the lowest mortality rate in each area, and then to compare the mortality rates from this baseline band with temperatures above and below the baseline. The study period was selected because it did not include extreme cold or hot events such as a heatwave. Data on daily deaths from each department were first used to examine the entire population and then to examine men, women, various age groups and various causes of death (respiratory disease, stroke, ischæmic heart disease, other disease of the circulatory system, and all other causes excluding violent deaths). Mean temperatures were provided by the National Weather Service. The results depicted an asymmetrical V- or U-shaped relationship between mortality and temperature, with a thermal optimum lower for the elderly, and generally lower for women than for men except in Paris. The relationship was also different depending on the cause of death. In all cases, more evidence was collected showing that cold weather was more deadly than hot weather, and it would now be interesting to enlarge the study to include years with cold spells and heatwaves. Furthermore, the results obtained could be of great use in estimating weather-related mortality as a consequence of future climate-change scenarios.

Keywords

Mortality Temperature Thermal optimum Global warming Climate change 

References

  1. Alderson MR (1985) Season and mortality. Health Trends 17:87–96Google Scholar
  2. Ballester F, Corella D, Pérez-Hoyos S, Sáez M (1997) Mortality as a function of temperature. A study in Valencia, Spain, 1991–1993. Int J Epidemiol 26:551–561PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Beniston M (2002) Climatic change: possible impact on human health. Swiss Med Wkly 132:332–337PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Besancenot JP (2003) La mortalité selon le contexte thermique. Réalité présente et scénarios pour le XXIème siècle. Le cas de la France. GICC, Paris, pp 1-54 http://medias.obs-mip.fr/gicc/ bdgicc/fichiersHTML/APP00/Projets/Rap_finaux/Integral.900.zip
  5. Bokenes L, Alexandersen TE, Osterud B, Tveita T, Mercer JB (2000) Physiological and haematological responses to cold exposure in the elderly. Int J Circumpolar Health 59:216–221PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Bull GM, Morton J (1975) Relationship of temperature with death rates from all causes and from certain respiratory and arteriosclerotic diseases in different age groups. Age Ageing 4:232–246PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Bull GM, Morton J (1978) Environment, temperature and death rates. Age Ageing 7:210–224PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Crawford VLS, McCann M, Stout RW (2003) Changes in seasonal deaths from myocardial infarction. Q J Med 96:45–52Google Scholar
  9. Curriero FC, Heiner KS, Samet JM, Zeger SL, Strug L, Patz JA (2002) Temperature and mortality in 11 cities of the Eastern United States. Am J Epidemiol 155:80–87PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Diaz J, Garcia R, Velázquez de Castro F, Hernández E, López C, Otero A (2002) Effects of extremely hot days on people older than 65 years in Seville (Spain) from 1986 to 1997. Int J Biometeorol 46:145–149PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Donaldson GC, Keatinge WR (1997) Early increases in ischæmic heart disease mortality dissociated from and later changes associated with respiratory mortality after cold weather in south east England. J Epidemiol Community Health 51:643–648PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Fleming DM, Cross KW, Crombie DL, Lancashire RJ (1993) Respiratory illness and mortality in England and Wales. A study of the relationship between weekly data for the incidence of respiratory disease presenting to general practitioners, and registered deaths. Eur J Epidemiol 9:571–576PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Gouveia N, Hajat S, Armstrong B (2003) Socioeconomic differentials in the temperature-mortality relationship in São Paulo, Brazil. Int J Epidemiol 32:390–397PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Kaciuba-Uscilko H, Grucza R (2001) Gender differences in thermoregulation. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care 4:533–536PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kalkstein LS, Davis RE (1989) Weather and human mortality: an evaluation of demographic and interregional responses in the United States. Ann Assoc Am Geogr 79:44–64CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Kalkstein LS, Greene JS (1997) An evaluation of climate/mortality relationships in large US cities and the possible impacts of climate change. Environ Health Perspect 105:84–93PubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Keatinge WR (1998) Mortality in winter. Eur Heart J 19:361–362PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Keatinge WR, Donaldson GC, Bucher K, Jendritzky G, Cordioli E, Martinelli M, Katsouyanni K, Kunst AE, McDonald C, Nayha S, Vuori I (2000a) Winter mortality in relation to climate. Int J Circumpolar Health 59:154–159PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Keatinge WR, Donaldson GC, Cordioli E, Martinelli M, Kunst AE, Mackenbach JP, Nayha S, Vuori I (2000b) Heat related mortality in warm and cold regions of Europe: observational study. BMJ 321:670–673PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Kunst AE, Looman CWN, Mackenbach JP (1993) Outdoor air temperature and mortality in the Netherlands: a time-series analysis. Am J Epidemiol 137:331–341PubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. Langford IH, Bentham G (1995) The potential effects of climate change on winter mortality in England and Wales. Int J Biometeorol 38:141–147PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Lanska DJ, Hoffmann RG (1999) Seasonal variation in stroke mortality rates. Neurology 52:984–990PubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. Le Tertre A, Lefranc A, Eilstein D, Declercq C, Medina S, Blanchard M, Chardon B, Fabre P, Filleul L, Jusot JF, Pascal L, Prouvost H, Cassadou S, Ledrans M (2006) Impact of the 2003 heatwave on all-cause mortality in 9 French cities. Epidemiol 17:75CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Mackenbach JP, Looman CW, Kunst AE (1993) Air pollution, lagged effects of temperature, and mortality: The Netherlands 1979–87. J Epidemiol Community Health 47:121–126PubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. Mercer JB (2003) Cold: an underrated risk factor for health. Environ Res 92:8–13PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Muggeo VMR, Vigotti MA (2002) Modelling trend in break-point estimation: an assessment of the heat tolerance and temperature effects in four Italian cities. In: Stasinopoulos M, Touloumi G (eds) Proceedings of the 17th International Workshop on Statistical Modelling. University of North London, Chania, Greece, pp 493–500Google Scholar
  27. Pan WH, Li LA, Tsai MJ (1995) Temperature extremes and mortality from coronary heart disease and cerebral infarction in elderly Chinese. Lancet 345:353–355PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Rooney C, McMichael J, Kovats RS, Coleman MP (1998) Excess mortality in England and Wales, and in Greater London, during the 1995 heatwave. J Epidemiol Community Health 52:482–486PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Saez M, Sunyer J, Castellsague J, Murillo C, Anto JM (1995) Relationship between weather temperature and mortality: a time series analysis approach in Barcelona. Int J Epidemiol 24:576–582PubMedGoogle Scholar
  30. Seretakis D, Lagiou P, Lipworth L, Signorello L, Rothman K, Trichopoulos D (1997) Changing seasonality of mortality from coronary heart disease. JAMA 278:1012–1014PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. The Eurowinter Group (1997) Cold exposure and winter mortality from ischæmic heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, respiratory disease, and all causes in warm and cold regions of Europe. Lancet 349:1341–1346CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Zauli Sajani S, Garaffoni G, Goldoni CA, Ranzi A, Lauriola P (2002) Mortality and bioclimatic discomfort in Emilia-Romagna, Italy. J Epidemiol Community Health 56:536–537PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© ISB 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mohamed Laaidi
    • 1
  • Karine Laaidi
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jean-Pierre Besancenot
    • 1
  1. 1.Climat et Santé, Faculté de MédecineCentre Universitaire d’Épidémiologie de PopulationDijon CedexFrance
  2. 2.Département Santé EnvironnementInstitut de Veille SanitaireSaint Maurice CedexFrance

Personalised recommendations