High level of premature illness and death amongst men is preventable, concludes report (Europe)

August 26, 2011

The Men’s Health Report published today by the European Commission highlights the state of men’s health in Europe as a serious public health concern. Patterns emerging from data taken from 34 European countries* show marked differences in health outcomes amongst men both between and within countries. Poor lifestyles and preventable risk factors account for a high share of premature death and illness in men, illustrating that their health disadvantage is not necessarily written in the genes but can be remedied in part by targeted policies and actions.

Some key findings from the report:

  • Although men are living longer that ever before, the current decline in births means that there will be a huge reduction of men of working age across the EU-27 in the coming decades.

  • Over 50% of premature deaths amongst men are avoidable.

  • Men are less likely than women to engage in routine or preventative health checks.

  • Even though there have been big reductions in cardiovascular morbidity and death amongst men, Cardio-Vascular disease is still one of the biggest risks to health and the principle cause of death in the older population.

  • Among men, prostate cancer has become the most diagnosed cancer in Europe.

  • Testicular cancer, despite effective treatment, still remains the first cause of cancer death among young males (20-35 years).

  • Men’s depression and other mental health problems are under detected and under treated in all European countries. This is partly due to men being less likely to seek help.

This report was commissioned by the European Commission and carried out by a consortium of authors under the lead of Professor Alan White. Its purpose is to inform policy makers, health professionals, academics and the wider population of the health challenges men face. The report is funded through the Public Health Programme.

* Data was collected from EU-27, Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, Lichenstein, Croatia, Turkey and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

Link to the report:

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