Diurnal temperature range (DTR) is an important meteorological indicator associated with global climate change, but little is known about the effects of DTR on mortality. We examined the effects of DTR on cause-/age-/education-specific mortality in Guangzhou, a subtropical city in China during 2003-2010. A quasi-Poisson regression model combined with distributed lag non-linear model was used to examine the effects of DTR, after controlling for daily mean temperature, air pollutants, season and day of the week. A 1 °C increase in DTR at lag 0-4 days was associated with a 0.47% (95% confidence interval: 0.01%-0.93%) increase in non-accidental mortality. Stroke mortality was most sensitive to DTR. Female, the elderly and those with low education were more susceptible to DTR than male, the youth and those with high education, respectively. Our findings suggest that vulnerable subpopulations should pay more attention to protect themselves from unstable daily weather.
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