The Influence of Apparent Temperature on Mortality in the Kintampo Health and Demographic Surveillance Area in the Middle Belt of Ghana: A Retrospective Time-Series Analysis

J Environ Public Health. 2020 Sep 22:2020:5980313. doi: 10.1155/2020/5980313. eCollection 2020.


Globally, studies have shown that diurnal changes in weather conditions and extreme weather events have a profound effect on mortality. Here, we assessed the effect of apparent temperature on all-cause mortality and the modifying effect of sex on the apparent temperature-mortality relationship using mortality and weather data archived over an eleven-year period. An overdispersed Poisson regression and distributed lag nonlinear models were used for this analysis. With these models, we analysed the relative risk of mortality at different temperature values over a 10-day lag period. By and large, we observed a nonlinear association between mean daily apparent temperature and all-cause mortality. An assessment of different temperature values over a 10-day lag period showed an increased risk of death at the lowest apparent temperature (18°C) from lag 2 to 4 with the highest relative risk of mortality (RR = 1.61, 95% CI: 1.2, 2.15, p value = 0.001) occurring three days after exposure. The relative risk of death also varied between males (RR = 0.31, 95% CI: 0.10, 0.94) and females (RR = 4.88, 95% CI: 1.40, 16.99) by apparent temperature and lag. On the whole, males are sensitive to both temperature extremes whilst females are more vulnerable to low temperature-related mortality. Accordingly, our findings could inform efforts at reducing temperature-related mortality in this context and other settings with similar environmental and demographic characteristics.

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Ghana / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mortality*
  • Population Surveillance
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk
  • Temperature*
  • Weather