Do younger and older Australians die from different alcohol-caused diseases?

The incidence of alcohol-caused diseases tends to increase with age. Alcoholic liver disease is most common among middle-aged and older age groups. Mental and behavioural disorders show a particularly strong upward trend with age, and are not commonly found in those aged under 30 years. Accidental poisonings tend to be concentrated among those aged 40-59 years.

Other alcohol-related causes of death in 14-17 year olds account for 0.3% of alcohol-caused deaths. Other alcohol-related causes of death in 18-24 year olds account for 0.3% of alcohol-caused deaths. Accidental poisoning in 18-24 year olds accounts for 0.2% of alcohol- caused deaths. Alcoholic liver disease in 25-29 year olds accounts for 0.3% of alcohol- caused deaths. Accidental poisoning in 25-29 year olds accounts for 0.1% of alcohol- caused deaths. Mental and behavioural disorders in 30-39 year olds account for 1% of alcohol- caused deaths. Alcoholic liver disease in 30-39 year olds accounts for 2% of alcohol- caused deaths. Accidental poisoning in 30-29 year olds accounts for 1% of alcohol- caused deaths. Other alcohol-related causes of death in 30-39 year olds account for 1% of alcohol- caused deaths. Mental and behavioural disorders in 40-49 year olds account for 4% of alcohol- caused deaths. Alcoholic liver disease in 40-49 year olds accounts for 13% of alcohol- caused deaths. Accidental poisoning in 40-49 year olds accounts for 2% of alcohol- caused deaths. Other alcohol-related causes of death in 40-49 year olds account for 1% of alcohol- caused deaths. Mental and behavioural disorders in 50-59 year olds account for 6% of alcohol- caused deaths. Alcoholic liver disease in 50-59 year olds accounts for 22% of alcohol- caused deaths. Accidental poisoning in 50-59 year olds accounts for 2% of alcohol- caused deaths. Other alcohol-related causes of death in 50-59 year olds account for 1% of alcohol- caused deaths. Mental and behavioural disorders in 60-69 year olds account for 6% of alcohol- caused deaths. Alcoholic liver disease in 60-69 year olds accounts for 17% of alcohol- caused deaths. Accidental poisoning in 60-69 year olds accounts for 1% of alcohol- caused deaths. Other alcohol-related causes of death in 60-69 year olds account for 3% of alcohol- caused deaths. Mental and behavioural disorders in 70+ year olds account for 8% of alcohol- caused deaths. Alcoholic liver disease in 70+ year olds accounts for 10% of alcohol- caused deaths. Accidental poisoning in 70+ year olds accounts for 1% of alcohol- caused deaths. Other alcohol-related causes of death in 70+ year olds account for 1% of alcohol- caused deaths. Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). 2010 Mortality Data (ABS secondary analysis, 2013).

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). 2010 Mortality Data (ABS secondary analysis, 2013).

Alcohol-Caused Disease: A disease, disorder or condition which was directly caused by the individual’s own alcohol consumption.

Diseases classified as directly caused by alcohol use include: mental and behavioural disorders due to alcohol use; alcohol-induced pseudo-Cushing’s syndrome; degeneration of nervous system due to alcohol; special epileptic syndromes; alcoholic polyneuropathy; alcoholic myopathy; alcoholic cardiomyopathy; alcoholic gastritis; alcoholic liver disease; alcohol-induced acute pancreatitis; alcohol-induced chronic pancreatitis; maternal care for (suspected) damage to fetus from alcohol; fetus and newborn affected by maternal use of alcohol; fetal alcohol syndrome (dysmorphic); finding of alcohol in blood; alcohol toxicity; accidental poisoning by and exposure to alcohol; intentional self-poisoning by and exposure to alcohol; poisoning by and exposure to alcohol, undetermined intent; evidence of alcohol involvement in morbidity/mortality determined by blood alcohol level; evidence of alcohol involvement in morbidity/mortality determined by level of intoxication.