In 2003, HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson approved the revision to the US Standard Certificates of Death and Fetal Death and encouraged all states to adopt them. The process involved in this revision, as well as details of what was revised, can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vital_certificate_revisions.htm.
Texas adopted the new US Standard Certificates of Death and Fetal Death in 2006. This revision includes changes to items such as alcohol use, race/ethnicity, etc. For details regarding race/ethnicity computation, see Table 44.
A total of 160,166 Texas residents died in 2007. The leading cause of death, diseases of the heart, accounted for 24.5 percent of those deaths, while the second most common cause of death, malignant neoplasms (cancer), accounted for 21.9 percent. Accidents, cerebrovascular and chronic lower respiratory diseases, ranked third, fourth, and fifth, respectively. Together, these five leading causes of death represented 63.3 percent of all deaths in 2007.
The number of infant deaths increased to 2,541 deaths in 2007 compared to 2,476 deaths in 2006. The infant mortality rate has remained the same as in 2006 - 6.2 infant deaths per 1,000 live births. Fetal deaths decreased from 2,382 in 2006 to 2,364 in 2007. The fetal death ratio decreased to 5.8 fetal deaths per 1,000 live births in 2007 compared to 6.0 in 2006. Seventy five women died in 2007 as a result of pregnancy or childbearing for a maternal mortality rate of 18.4 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births.
Years of potential life lost (YPLL), a measure of premature mortality, is the sum of years lost by persons who die before age 65 (see Technical Appendix). The YPLL by Texans increased from 916,648 in 2006 to 934,426 in 2007. Accidents, malignant neoplasms, and heart diseases continued to be the top three leading causes of premature mortality in Texas.
Leading Causes of Death
The order of the top three leading causes of death had remained the same since 1979 but changed in 2007: cerebrovascular diseases and accidents changed positions relative to their placement in 2006. Heart diseases claimed 39,253 lives (38,487 in 2006) and continued to be the leading cause of death followed by malignant neoplasms (cancer) with 35,005 deaths (34,776 in 2006). Diseases of the heart and malignant neoplasms have been the first and second leading causes of death in Texas and the nation since 1950.
Accidents with adverse effects ranked third with 9,495 deaths, compared to 9,006 in 2006. The top three leading causes of death, diseases of the heart, malignant neoplasms, and accidents, accounted for 52.3 percent of all Texas resident deaths in 2007. Cerebrovascular diseases with 9,472 deaths (9,332 in 2006) and chronic lower respiratory diseases with 8,082 deaths (7,599 in 2006) rounded out the top five leading causes of death.
The sixth leading cause was diabetes mellitus with 5,105 deaths in 2007 (5,180 in 2006) and the number of deaths due to Alzheimer's disease was 4,805 in 2007 (4,880 in 2006). Nephritis and related diseases were the eighth leading cause with 3,290 deaths in 2007. Influenza and pneumonia were the ninth leading cause with 3,241 deaths in 2007. Septicemia was the tenth leading cause with 2,848 deaths in 2007.
Although homicide is no longer one of the ten leading causes of death among all Texas residents, it is the tenth leading cause among Blacks (see Table 16 for the leading causes of death by race/ethnicity). For details regarding race/ethnicity computation, see Table 44.
The majority of deaths (31.6 percent) in 2007 to residents ages 1 through 44 were due to accidents. Malignant neoplasms were responsible for 11.5 percent of all deaths to this age group and diseases of the heart claimed the lives of another 9.6 percent.
Beginning at age 45, accidents play a less significant role in total deaths; only 10.9 percent of all deaths to individuals 45-54 were due to accidents. However, diseases of the heart and malignant neoplasms were responsible for 46.2 percent of the deaths to this age group. Deaths due to chronic conditions (diseases of the heart, malignant neoplasms, cerebrovascular diseases, chronic lower respiratory diseases, and Alzheimer's disease) were the major causes of death in individuals 55 years and older, accounting for 66.3 percent of deaths to this age group.
Although males represented half (50.1 percent) of the Texas population in 2007, they accounted for 60.3 percent of all deaths to persons 1 through 74 years of age. Much of this difference is due to the greater likelihood of males dying at younger ages from external causes (such as accidents, homicide, and suicide) and HIV infection (see Table 17).
There were 2,541 infant deaths to Texas residents in 2007 for an infant mortality rate of 6.2 infant deaths per 1,000 live births (see Table 29). The Black infant mortality rate (11.8) continued to be considerably greater than the rate of Whites (5.4) and Hispanics (5.5).
The top five leading causes of infant death in 2007 were congenital malformations, deformations, and chromosomal abnormalities (22.4 percent of all infant deaths); disorders related to short gestation and low birth weight, not elsewhere classified (12.4 percent of infant deaths); Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (10.9 percent); maternal complications of pregnancy (4.4 percent); and accidents (3.5 percent). For the selected causes of infant death among Texas residents, see Table 31.
The majority (1,553; 61.1 percent) of infant deaths took place during the first 27 days of life (neonatal period), and the rate of neonatal deaths in Texas was 3.8 per 1,000 live births (see Table 30). By rank, the top leading causes of neonatal death were congenital malformations, deformations, and chromosomal abnormalities (24.9 percent) and disorders related to short gestation and low birth weight, not elsewhere classified (19.8 percent). For the selected causes of neonatal death among Texas residents, see Table 32.
Fetal Deaths and Perinatal Mortality
In Texas, a fetal death is the death of a product of conception before complete expulsion or extraction from its mother. It is required to be registered with the Vital Statistics Unit as a fetal death for any fetus weighing 350 grams or more, or if the weight is unknown, a fetus aged 20 weeks or more. However, all reported fetal deaths, regardless of weight or length of gestation, are included in this annual report. There were 2,364 fetal deaths to Texas residents in 2007. The fetal death ratio was 5.8 fetal deaths per 1,000 live births in 2007, which is less than in 2006 (6.0).
Perinatal mortality includes fetal and neonatal deaths. The perinatal mortality rate was 9.2 per 1,000 fetal deaths and live births in 2007 (9.5 in 2006). For fetal and perinatal mortality figures, see Table 28.
In 2007, 75 women died as a result of pregnancy or childbearing, for a maternal mortality rate of 18.4 per 100,000 live births. The maternal mortality rate for Black women of 26.0 continues to be higher than the state value but dropped from 65.4 in 2006. The maternal mortality rate for White (excluding Other) women increased to 21.6 in 2007 from 15.9 in 2006. Among Hispanic women, the maternal mortality rate dropped to 15.2 in 2007 from 18.2 in 2006. However, rates based on small numbers may be misleading (see Technical Appendix).
Life Expectancy at Birth
Texans born in 2007 had a life expectancy at birth of 77.7 years. Because males tend to die from more external causes (such as accidents, homicide, and suicide) and at younger ages than females, females had a higher life expectancy at birth than males: 80.2 years vs. 75.2. A Hispanic child born in 2007 had a life expectancy at birth of 79.1 years, while a White newborn had a life expectancy of 77.6 years. Black life expectancy remained below the average, at 73.8 years (see Table 25).
Age-Adjusted Death Rate
The age-adjusted death rate for Texas in 2007 was 810.1 deaths per 100,000 population. The age-adjusted death rate for males was 920.9 in 2007 and the rate for females was 714.2. The age-adjusted death rate for Whites and Others, regardless of gender, was 825.1 deaths per 100,000 population. The Hispanic rate of 672.9 remained the lowest of all racial/ethnic groups in 2007. The age-adjusted death rate for Blacks continued to be well above the rate for the Texas population as a whole at 1,016.0 per 100,000 population (see Table 26A).
Years of Potential Life Lost (YPLL)
The YPLL statistic is a way to demonstrate both gender and race/ethnicity differences in mortality risks and is the sum of years lost by persons who die before the age of 65 (see Technical Appendix). The total YPLL for Texans in 2007 was 934,426 years, up from 916,648 years in 2006 (see Table 27). Male mortality accounted for 592,764 or 63.4 percent of these years and the total YPLL for women was 341,662 or 36.6 percent. This difference is mostly due to males dying at younger ages than females from causes that are primarily external or preventable in nature, such as accidents and HIV infection.
Death by accident was the number one cause of premature mortality in 2007 and represented 195,727 YPLL, or 9.1 years per 1,000 persons ages 0-64. Malignant neoplasms were responsible for the second largest number of years lost with 132,398 YPLL, for a rate of 6.1. Heart diseases had a rate of 4.9 and remained the third leading cause of YPLL in Texas, with 104,715 years of potential life lost. Conditions Arising in the Perinatal Period was the fourth leading cause of premature mortality with 71,537 YPLL, with a rate of 3.3. The number of years lost from suicide and homicide were the fifth and sixth leading cause of premature mortality in Texas with YPLLs of 53,129 and 48,244 respectively (or 2.5 and 2.2 years per 1,000 persons ages 0-64 respectively).