What is the most common number

Causes of death in 2018: cardiovascular diseases and cancer continue to be the most common; overall declining mortality

Press release: 12.048-114 / 19

Vienna, 2019-06-26 - According to Statistics Austria, a total of 83,975 people died in Austria in 2018, 51% of them women and 49% men. Due to the steadily increasing life expectancy, both men and women die more often from diseases that occur more frequently in old age. The two most common causes of death in 2018 were circulatory system diseases (38.9%) and cancer (24.5%), accounting for two-thirds of deaths. Other significant causes of death were diseases of the respiratory organs (6.6%), injuries and poisoning (5.3%) and diseases of the digestive organs (3.3%).

Mortality in men higher than in women

Of the people who died in Austria in 2018, 40,851 were men and 43,124 women. Although fewer men than women died in absolute numbers, taking into account the growing number of older people, the mortality (age-standardized death rate) was higher for men than for women (men: 1,180.7 deaths per 100,000 of the same sex population, women: 795.3) . The higher number of female deaths is a consequence of the higher proportion of women in the older population.

Mortality has decreased over the past decade

From 2008 to 2018, the age-adjusted total mortality rate for both sexes together decreased by 10.1%. This is mainly due to a decrease in mortality from diseases of the circulatory system (-21.7%). Age-standardized cancer mortality has also decreased by 13.0% over the past ten years - with a simultaneous increase in the absolute number of cancer deaths by 4.0%.

Most common age-specific causes of death: cardiovascular diseases in old age, cancer in middle age, cancer and suicides in younger age

More than half of the deaths in 2018 (46,563 deaths or 55.4%) occurred after the age of 80. In this age group, every second death was caused by a disease of the circulatory system. Around one in seven people in this age group (14.8%) died of cancer. Diseases of the respiratory organs, mental illnesses, and nutritional and metabolic diseases were also significant by far. Around 1% of people over 80 died as a result of falls (see Table 1).

Around 43% of all deaths occurred between the ages of 40 and 80. In this age group, cancer was the leading cause of death: four in ten deaths were caused by carcinoma. A quarter of mid-adult deaths in 2018 were caused by cardiovascular disease and 7% by diseases of the respiratory system.

In adolescents and adults between the ages of ten and 40 (together 1.5% of all deaths) cancer, suicides and accidents were the most common causes of death. In the few deaths of children between the ages of one and under ten years (74 deaths in 2018 or 0.1%), congenital malformations were the most common cause of death alongside cancer.

In infants (231 deaths in 2018 or 0.3%), birth complications and congenital malformations were the most common causes of early death.

Detailed results and further information on the cause of death statistics can be found on our website.

Information on the methodology, definitions: The cause of death statistics contain information on the causes of death of all deceased persons. This corresponds to a medically documented full survey of more than 80,000 cases annually. The cause of death statistics provide retrospective information about the occurrence and course of diseases in the population. The data obtained form the basis for medical research and health system research.
The total number of deaths in a year depends on the mortality and the size and age structure of the population. Mortality is usually described using age-standardized death rates. The standardized death rate indicates how many deaths would have occurred per 100,000 living people due to the prevailing mortality rate if the age structure of the population in the relevant reporting period had corresponded to that of a standard population. The disruptive influence of the respective age structure is thereby eliminated, i. H. this measure takes into account both the overall growing population and its continuous aging and thus makes the different death conditions comparable over time. The 2013 standard population published by Eurostat serves as the standard population. This standard population is an "artificial population" with an estimated age structure for the European population, which is used as a uniform basis for calculating comparable age-standardized death rates.


genderAge at the time of death in years
01–910–3940-7980 and olderA total of
A total of
Causes of Death (ICD Codes)in% of the respective age group
Diseases of the cardiovascular system I00-I992,21,47,426,249,838,9
Malignant neoplasms C00-C970,927,015,937,514,824,5
Respiratory diseases J00-J991,38,11,86,86,66,6
Endocrine, nutritional and metabolic diseases E00-E900,94,12,45,04,64,7
Mental illnesses F01-F99--4,82,55,24,0
Diseases of the nervous system and sense organs G00-H952,28,13,63,34,54,0
Diseases of the digestive organs
Suicide and self-harm X60-X84, Y87.0--18,12,20,41,4
Accidents caused by falls W00-W19-2,72,60,91,11,0
Transport accidents V01-V99, Y85-5,48,80,70,10,5
Congenital malformations, deformities and chromosomal abnormalities Q00-Q9932,523,03,40,30,00,3
Perinatal Affections P00-P9652,4----0,1
Others (all other ICD codes)7,820,328,39,910,610,5
A total of100,0100,0100,0100,0100,0100,0
Q: STATISTIK AUSTRIA, cause of death statistics. - The codes in brackets refer to the international classification of diseases and related health problems (10th revision, version 2013), selected ICD groups are shown. - Including people who died abroad and resided in Austria.

Answering questions on the topic in the Population Directorate, Statistics Austria:
Mag.Barbara LEITNER, Tel .: +43 (1) 71128-7262 or [email protected] and
Mag. Jeannette KLIMONT, Tel .: +43 (1) 71128-8277 or [email protected]

Media owner, manufacturer and publisher:
Federal Statistics Austria
1110 Vienna, Guglgasse 13, Tel .: +43 (1) 71128-7777
[email protected] © STATISTIK AUSTRIA

© STATISTICS AUSTRIA, last change on June 26th, 2019

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