Life expectancy/Introduction

Globally, men and women differ in terms of life expectancy. In 186 of 191 countries, men die earlier than women. Although average life expectancy is increasing every year, women still live longer than men. Undoubtedly, the causes of this sexual dimorphism are multifactorial and have been studied from both a sociological and biological perspective. The difference in life expectancy varies considerably. In most industrialized countries, women have six to eight years longer life expectancy than men. In Sweden, however, this average difference is only four years. By contrast, men in Russia live on average 13 years shorter than women. A decisive role is attributed to cultural differences, which have a significant influence on gender roles and can increase or decrease life expectancy (in Russia, excessive alcohol consumption is part of the stereotypically male role). [1] However, biological factors (genes and sex hormones) also prevent male and female life expectancy from matching. [2]


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  1. Kindler-Röhrborn A, Pfleiderer B. Gendermedizin - Modewort oder Notwendigkeit?: - Die Rolle des Geschlechts in der Medizin. XX 2012; 1(03):146–52.
  2. Janssen SM, Lagro-Janssen, Antoine L M. Physician's gender, communication style, patient preferences and patient satisfaction in gynecology and obstetrics: a systematic review. Patient education and counseling 2012; 89(2):221–6.


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Last changed: 2021-03-01 12:54:20