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Free Content Mortality from tuberculosis in Spain from 1970 to 1993: changes in epidemiological trends during the acquired immune-deficiency syndrome epidemic

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Setting: Spain has the highest rates in Europe of the acquired immune-deficiency syndrome (AIDS), and probably a high rate of dual human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/tuberculosis infection.

Objective: To determine the trends of tuberculosis mortality in Spain from 1970 to 1993, and to draw conclusions about the effects of the AIDS epidemic on these trends.

Design: Official population figures and data on deaths from tuberculosis were used to calculate specific tuberculosis mortality rates by age and sex (per 100000 population). Causes of death from tuberculosis were grouped according to the International Classification of Diseases.

Results: The crude death rate decreased from 10.28 to 1.84, with an annual mean decrease of 8.1% (95% confidence interval 7.5% to 8.7%). No changes in mortality from tuberculosis of the central nervous system (CNS) have been recorded since 1982, and none in mortality from other tuberculosis and in the age group 20–49 years since 1986. Mortality was higher among males and in the older age groups. The peak observed in the 1970s, due to the excess of deaths from CNS tuberculosis in children under the age of 5 years, has disappeared.

Conclusion: Between 1970 and 1993, tuberculosis mortality in Spain decreased, although an excess of deaths occurred in young adults and from extra-pulmonary tuberculosis, coinciding with the AIDS epidemic.
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Keywords: AIDS; mortality; tuberculosis

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: Department of Pneumology, Hospital Dr. Peset, Valencia, Spain

Publication date: 01 August 1998

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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