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Life spans decline in some U.S. areas

USA Today, April 22, 2008

A startling number of people—especially women—living primarily in the Deep South and in Appalachia saw a drop in life spans beginning in 1983, according to researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health. The study found that found that 4% of the male population and 19% of the female population experienced either declines or stagnation in their life expectancy in the ’80s and ’90s. In addition to race and poverty, other contributing factors include an increase in diabetes, cancers and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, researchers said.