The population of the United States is aging. Although centenarians are still uncommon, the numbers of Americans aged 100 and over increased 43.6%, from 50,281 in 2000 to 72,197 in 2014. As the number of centenarians increases, so does the number of deaths in this age group.
NCHS has released a report with mortality data filed by the 50 states and the District of Columbia for years 2000 through 2014 that was analyzed to determine the number of deaths, age-specific death rates by race and ethnicity, and sex-specific leading causes of death among centenarians.
- Death rates for centenarians increased from 2000 through 2008 and then decreased through 2014 for both males and females.
- Death rates for centenarians increased from 2000 through 2006 for the Hispanic population and from 2000 through 2008 for the non-Hispanic white and black populations, and subsequently decreased through 2014 for all racial and ethnic groups examined.
- The top five causes of death among centenarians in 2014 were heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, cancer, and influenza and pneumonia.
- Death rates for Alzheimer’s disease increased 119% between 2000 and 2014 among centenarians.