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IQ in late adolescence/early adulthood, risk factors in middle age and later all-cause mortality in men: the Vietnam Experience Study

IQ in late adolescence/early adulthood, risk factors in middle age and later all-cause mortality in men: the Vietnam Experience Study
IQ in late adolescence/early adulthood, risk factors in middle age and later all-cause mortality in men: the Vietnam Experience Study
OBJECTIVE: To examine the role of potential mediating factors in explaining the IQ-mortality relation.
DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: A total of 4316 male former Vietnam-era US army personnel with IQ test results at entry into the service in late adolescence/early adulthood in the 1960/1970s (mean age at entry 20.4 years) participated in a telephone survey and medical examination in middle age (mean age 38.3 years) in 1985-6. They were then followed up for mortality experience for 15 years.
MAIN RESULTS: In age-adjusted analyses, higher IQ scores were associated with reduced rates of total mortality (hazard ratio (HR)(per SD increase in IQ) 0.71; 95% CI 0.63 to 0.81). This relation did not appear to be heavily confounded by early socioeconomic position or ethnicity. The impact of adjusting for some potentially mediating risk indices measured in middle age on the IQ-mortality relation (marital status, alcohol consumption, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, pulse rate, blood glucose, body mass index, psychiatric and somatic illness at medical examination) was negligible (<10% attenuation in risk). Controlling for others (cigarette smoking, lung function) had a modest impact (10-17%). Education (0.79; 0.69 to 0.92), occupational prestige (0.77; 0.68 to 0.88) and income (0.86; 0.75 to 0.98) yielded the greatest attenuation in the IQ-mortality gradient (21-52%); after their collective adjustment, the IQ-mortality link was effectively eliminated (0.92; 0.79 to 1.07).
CONCLUSIONS: In this cohort, socioeconomic position in middle age might lie on the pathway linking earlier IQ with later mortality risk but might also partly act as a surrogate for cognitive ability.
body mass index, glucose, lung, research, education, pressure, function, middle age, alcohol, blood glucose, smoking, risk, marital status, mortality, blood-pressure, mass, blood pressure, risk factors, cohort, men, male, health, public health, blood
0143-005X
522-531
Batty, G.D.
bf322937-2cfb-4174-b5cb-dc016f0d0b8a
Shipley, M.J.
da07ad9b-1ea2-41f9-8c2a-df67edd60a70
Mortensen, L.H.
053a4abd-af2e-486e-8e5e-5e2dedae259c
Boyle, S.H.
dddb7153-28fc-4e76-bb28-daeac1f0fa93
Barefoot, J.
d8e349ad-d32f-4f83-bbe5-25176471d0cd
Gronbaek, M.
9751752b-dbfd-45a0-9836-d8d791c12689
Gale, C.R.
5bb2abb3-7b53-42d6-8aa7-817e193140c8
Deary, I.J.
e3403cfe-eb5b-4941-903d-87ef0db89c60
Batty, G.D.
bf322937-2cfb-4174-b5cb-dc016f0d0b8a
Shipley, M.J.
da07ad9b-1ea2-41f9-8c2a-df67edd60a70
Mortensen, L.H.
053a4abd-af2e-486e-8e5e-5e2dedae259c
Boyle, S.H.
dddb7153-28fc-4e76-bb28-daeac1f0fa93
Barefoot, J.
d8e349ad-d32f-4f83-bbe5-25176471d0cd
Gronbaek, M.
9751752b-dbfd-45a0-9836-d8d791c12689
Gale, C.R.
5bb2abb3-7b53-42d6-8aa7-817e193140c8
Deary, I.J.
e3403cfe-eb5b-4941-903d-87ef0db89c60

Batty, G.D., Shipley, M.J., Mortensen, L.H., Boyle, S.H., Barefoot, J., Gronbaek, M., Gale, C.R. and Deary, I.J. (2008) IQ in late adolescence/early adulthood, risk factors in middle age and later all-cause mortality in men: the Vietnam Experience Study. Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, 62 (6), 522-531. (doi:10.1136/jech.2007.064881).

Record type: Article

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To examine the role of potential mediating factors in explaining the IQ-mortality relation.
DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: A total of 4316 male former Vietnam-era US army personnel with IQ test results at entry into the service in late adolescence/early adulthood in the 1960/1970s (mean age at entry 20.4 years) participated in a telephone survey and medical examination in middle age (mean age 38.3 years) in 1985-6. They were then followed up for mortality experience for 15 years.
MAIN RESULTS: In age-adjusted analyses, higher IQ scores were associated with reduced rates of total mortality (hazard ratio (HR)(per SD increase in IQ) 0.71; 95% CI 0.63 to 0.81). This relation did not appear to be heavily confounded by early socioeconomic position or ethnicity. The impact of adjusting for some potentially mediating risk indices measured in middle age on the IQ-mortality relation (marital status, alcohol consumption, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, pulse rate, blood glucose, body mass index, psychiatric and somatic illness at medical examination) was negligible (<10% attenuation in risk). Controlling for others (cigarette smoking, lung function) had a modest impact (10-17%). Education (0.79; 0.69 to 0.92), occupational prestige (0.77; 0.68 to 0.88) and income (0.86; 0.75 to 0.98) yielded the greatest attenuation in the IQ-mortality gradient (21-52%); after their collective adjustment, the IQ-mortality link was effectively eliminated (0.92; 0.79 to 1.07).
CONCLUSIONS: In this cohort, socioeconomic position in middle age might lie on the pathway linking earlier IQ with later mortality risk but might also partly act as a surrogate for cognitive ability.

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Published date: 2008
Keywords: body mass index, glucose, lung, research, education, pressure, function, middle age, alcohol, blood glucose, smoking, risk, marital status, mortality, blood-pressure, mass, blood pressure, risk factors, cohort, men, male, health, public health, blood
Organisations: Medicine

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 60900
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/60900
ISSN: 0143-005X
PURE UUID: 6f48a61a-d654-4cdd-a537-1f496070bf2b
ORCID for C.R. Gale: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3361-8638

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Date deposited: 04 Sep 2008
Last modified: 14 Mar 2019 01:52

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Contributors

Author: G.D. Batty
Author: M.J. Shipley
Author: L.H. Mortensen
Author: S.H. Boyle
Author: J. Barefoot
Author: M. Gronbaek
Author: C.R. Gale ORCID iD
Author: I.J. Deary

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