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men, we return to a pattern very similar to that of 1970-1980. For women, the pattern is also almost the same, except for ages 70-79, which in the 1970s are characterized by favorable trends in respiratory diseases and cancer.
The excess mortality among Russian males is probably the highest in the world. From 1958 to 1992, the difference in life expectancy between males and females in Russia grew from 7.3 to 11.8 years, reaching 13 years in 1993.
To identify the contribution of each group of causes to the differences between male and female life expectancies, we again used the method of decomposition of differences in life expectancy proposed by Andreev (1982). The results for six years (1970, 1975, 1980, 1984, 1987, and 1992) (excluding 1993) are given in Table 2-4.
More than 60 percent of the difference between male and female life expectancy is due to two causes of death: injury and poisoning, and cardiovascular diseases. Throughout the period, except for the special year 1987, the former group of causes explains around 35 percent of the difference. The influence of the latter group increases in the 1970s from 26 percent in 1970 to 30 percent in 1980 and remains around this level in the 1980s. At a lower level, the role played by respiratory and infectious diseases decreases (from 5 to 2 percent and from 12 to 7 percent, respectively), while that of cancer increases slightly (from 14 to 16 percent).
The widening of the gap between the sexes is due mainly to an increase in the differences in mortality from cardiovascular diseases and cancer, as well as from injury and poisoning. The notable reduction in the differences between male and female life expectancy in 1987 is closely related to a decrease in the differences between the sexes with regard to mortality from injury and poisoning. The recent increase in the gap between 1987 and 1992 is due to a new deterioration of the male situation as regards injury and poisoning and cardiovascular diseases.
TABLE 2-4 Decomposition by Causes of the Differences in Life Expectancy Between Males and Females