Death rate from Parkinson’s disease rises in US

Death rate
© Astrid Gast

The death rate from Parkinson’s disease has risen by 63% in the United States, according to a new study

Researchers looked at a national death registry of 479,059 people who died of Parkinson’s between 1999-2019 and found that the death rate from the disease had risen by about 63% in the United States.

The results also showed that the death rate was twice as high in men and in white people.

“We know that people are living longer and the general population is getting older, but that doesn’t fully explain the increase we saw in the death rate in people with Parkinson’s,” study author Wei Bao, MD, PhD, who conducted the research at the University of Iowa in Iowa City. “Understanding why more people are dying from this disease is critical if we are going to reverse the trend.”

Parkinson’s death rates

The number of people who died increased from 5.4 per 100,000 people in 1999 to 8.8 per 100,000 people in 2019 and the average annual increase was 2.4%.

In 2019, the death rate for white people was 9.7 per 100,000 people, followed by Hispanic people, at 6.5 per 100,000 people, and non-Hispanic Black people, at 4.7 per 100,000 people.

“It’s important to continue to evaluate long-term trends in Parkinson’s death rates,” Bao added. “This can inform future research that may help pinpoint why more people are dying of the disease. Also, updating vital statistics about Parkinson’s death rates may be used for priority setting and financing of health care and policy.”


The full study has been published in the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.


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