Rising amyotrophic lateral sclerosis mortality in France 1968-1990: increased life expectancy and inter-disease competition as an explanation

J Neurol. 1994 Jun;241(7):448-55. doi: 10.1007/BF00900964.


Gompertzian analysis is a statistical technique which has been successfully applied to the analysis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) mortality in England and Wales, Japan and the United States. This paper analyses the consistent trend of rising ALS mortality in France over the years 1968-1990, a period during which crude mortality rose from 400 deaths in 1968 to 950 deaths in 1990. The findings indicate that age-specific mortality rates have risen at ages older than 54 years for men and 53 years for women and decreased slightly at younger ages. The evolving ALS mortality pattern is attributable to changing inter-disease competition resulting from the increased life expectancy of the French population, rather than to changing environmental aetiopathogenic factors or to substantial artefact effects.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis / mortality*
  • Cause of Death
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Epidemiologic Methods
  • Female
  • France / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Life Expectancy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Survival Rate