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Child maltreatment, early life socioeconomic disadvantage and all-cause mortality in mid-adulthood: findings from a prospective British birth cohort

Rogers, NT; Power, C; Pinto Pereira, SM; (2021) Child maltreatment, early life socioeconomic disadvantage and all-cause mortality in mid-adulthood: findings from a prospective British birth cohort. BMJ Open , 11 (9) , Article e050914. 10.1136/bmjopen-2021-050914. Green open access

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Abstract

Objectives: Early-life adversities (ELAs) such as child maltreatment (neglect and abuse) and socioeconomic disadvantage have been associated with adult mortality. However, evidence is sparse for specific types of ELA. We aimed to establish whether specific ELAs (ie, different types of child maltreatment and socioeconomic disadvantage) were associated independently with all-cause mortality in mid-adulthood and to examine potential intermediary pathways. / Design: Prospective cohort study. / Setting: 1958 British birth cohort: a longitudinal, population-based sample of individuals born in Great Britain during a single week in March 1958. / Participants: 9310 males and females with data on child maltreatment and mortality (44/45–58 years). / Outcome measures: Mortality follow-up from 2002/2003 to 2016 when participants were aged 44/45–58 years. Death was ascertained via the NHS Central Register (N=296) or cohort maintenance activities (N=16). / Results: Prevalence of ELAs ranged from 1.6% (sexual abuse) to 11% (psychological abuse). Several, but not all, ELAs were associated with increased risk of premature death, independent of covariates and other adversities; adjusted HRs were 2.64 (95% CI 1.52 to 4.59) for sexual abuse, 1.93 (95% CI 1.45 to 2.58) for socioeconomic disadvantage, 1.73 (95% CI 1.11 to 2.71) for physical abuse and 1.43 (95% CI 1.03 to 1.98) for neglect. After adjustment for covariates and other adversities, no associations with mortality were observed for psychological and witnessing abuse. Regarding potential intermediaries (including adult socioeconomic factors, behaviours, adiposity, mental health and cardiometabolic markers), most associations attenuated after accounting for adult health behaviours (particularly smoking). In addition, early-life socioeconomic disadvantage and neglect associations attenuated after accounting for adult socioeconomic factors. The association for sexual abuse and premature mortality was largely unaffected by potential intermediaries. / Conclusions: Associations with premature mortality varied by type of ELA: associations for sexual and physical abuse, neglect and socioeconomic disadvantage were independent of each other. Different types of ELAs could influence premature mortality via different pathways; this requires further research.

Type: Article
Title: Child maltreatment, early life socioeconomic disadvantage and all-cause mortality in mid-adulthood: findings from a prospective British birth cohort
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2021-050914
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2021-050914
Language: English
Additional information: This is an open access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported (CC BY 4.0) license, which permits others to copy, redistribute, remix, transform and build upon this work for any purpose, provided the original work is properly cited, a link to the licence is given, and indication of whether changes were made. See: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci > Department of Targeted Intervention
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Population, Policy and Practice Dept
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10135141
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