You might want to make your birthday wish a little early.
People are 14 percent more likely to die on their birthday than on another day of the year, according to a study of 2.4 million deaths over a 40-year period, from 1969 to 2008.
Risks increased as people aged, rising to 18 percent for people who were older than 60, the study found.
"We concluded that birthdays end lethally more frequently than might be expected," lead author Vladeta Ajdacic-Gross, senior researcher in psychiatry at the University of Zurich, told The Independent .
Among the findings in the study, published in Annals of Epidemiology :
- Stress plays a role in the deaths, or what the authors note as the "birthday blues";
- Birthday deaths were caused by heart attacks, stroke, cancer, falls and suicide;
- Birthday strokes were up 21.5 percent – mostly in women – compared to the days;
- Cancer deaths rose 10.5 percent for both sexes.
- Of the 2.4 million deaths researchers analyzed over a 40-year period, there were 13.8 percent more deaths on birthdays compared to another day of the year;
- For men, the findings showed a 34.9 per cent increase in suicides, along with a 28.5 percent spike in accidental deaths.
The study appears to debunk the idea that people were more likely to die in the days after their birthday. Researchers said the "birthday blues" seemed to play a major part in the rise in deaths on birthdays, reported The Daily Mail .
Two famous people who died on their birthdays are Ingrid Bergman, who passed away because of breast cancer on her 67th birthday in 1982; and William Shakespeare, who reportedly died of unknown causes on his 52nd birthday in 1616, reported The Daily Mail.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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