Anders Ahlbom

Anders Ahlbom
Karolinska Institutet | KI · Institute of Environmental Medicine - IMM

PhD

About

451
Publications
65,169
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29,441
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Introduction
Anders Ahlbom, PhD. Professor of Epidemiology since 1983; Head, Unit of Epidemiology 1983-2010; Head, Institute of Environmental Medicine, 2009-2013; Founding Director, Unit of Epidemiology, Stockholm County Council Center for Public Health; Member of the founding Board, Swedish Society for DemographyM; ember of the founding Board, Swedish Society for Epidemiology,
Additional affiliations
July 1983 - present
Karolinska Institutet
Position
  • Professor of Epidemiology
Description
  • Head, Unit of Epidemiology 1983-2010 Head, Institute of Environmental Medicine 2009.-2013

Publications

Publications (451)
Article
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Objectives The aim of the study was to examine the associations between heavy physical workload among middle-aged and older workers and disability pension due to any diagnosis, as well as musculoskeletal, psychiatric, cardiovascular or respiratory diagnoses. The population-based design made it possible to examine dose–response and potential gender...
Article
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Background Mortality doubles approximately every 6–7 years during adulthood. This exponential increase in death risk with chronological age is the population-level manifestation of ageing, and often referred to as the rate-of-ageing. Objective We explore whether the onset of severe chronic disease alters the rate-of-ageing. Methods Using Swedish...
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Background Both age and comorbidity are established risk factors for death among those infected with COVID-19. Because they often co-exist, it is difficult to assess if age is a risk factor on its own. Methods We used administrative register data of the total Swedish population from 01/2015 until 07/2020. We stratified the population aged 70+ into...
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Background This aggregated population study investigated the impact of the seemingly quasi-randomly assigned school winter holiday in week 6–10 (February to early March) on excess mortality in 219 European regions (11 countries) during the COVID-19 pandemic in the spring 2020. A secondary aim was to evaluate the impact of government responses to th...
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Background: Hip fractures are common and severe conditions among older individuals, associated with high mortality, and the Nordic countries have the highest incidence rates globally. With this study, we aim to present a comprehensive picture of trends in hip fracture incidence and survival in the older Swedish population stratified by education,...
Preprint
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Background This aggregated population study of 219 regions in 11 European countries investigated the effect of the seemingly quasi-randomly assigned school winter holiday week on excess mortality associated with the COVID-19 pandemic during spring 2020. A secondary aim was to evaluate the impact of stringency and timing of the government responses...
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Background Sweden has one of the highest numbers of COVID-19 deaths per inhabitant globally. However, absolute death counts can be misleading. Estimating age- and sex-specific mortality rates is necessary in order to account for the underlying population structure. Furthermore, given the difficulty of assigning causes of death, excess all-cause mor...
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Life expectancy (LE) is considered a straightforward summary measure of mortality that comes with an implicit age standardisation. Thus, it has become common to present differences in mortality across populations as differences in LE, instead of, say, relative risks. However, most of the time LE does not quite provide what the term promises. LE is...
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The World Health Organization and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control suggest that individuals over the age of 70 years or with underlying cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, or diabetes are at increased risk of severe COVID-19. However, the prevalence of these prognostic factors is unknown...
Article
Mortality from Covid-19 is monitored in detail and compared between countries with different strategies against the virus. There is, however, often a lack of understanding of what is required in terms of measures and interpretation to enable correct comparisons. The number of deaths from Covid-19 is affected by the testing strategy and many other t...
Preprint
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Objectives: Describe the burden and prevalence of prognostic factors of severe COVID-19 disease at national and county level in Sweden. Design: Cross sectional study Setting: Sweden Participants: 9,624,428 individuals living in Sweden on 31st December 2014 and alive on 1st January 2016 Main outcome measures: Burden and prevalence of prognostic fact...
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Background Effects of radiofrequency electromagnetic field exposure (RF-EMF) from mobile phone use on sleep quality has mainly been investigated in cross-sectional studies. The few previous prospective cohort studies found no or inconsistent associations, but had limited statistical power and short follow-up. In this large prospective cohort study,...
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Background: During the past decades, life expectancy has continued to increase in most high-income countries. Previous research suggests that improvements in life expectancy have primarily been driven by advances at the upper end of the health distribution, while parts of the population have lagged behind. Using data from the entire Swedish popula...
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The scientific debate following the initial formulation of the “bad luck” hypothesis in cancer development highlighted how measures based on analysis of variance are inappropriately used for risk communication. The notion of “explained” variance is not only used to quantify randomness, but also to quantify genetic and environmental contribution to...
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Background: Mobile phone use and exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) from it have been associated with symptoms in some studies, but the studies have shortcomings and their findings are inconsistent. We conducted a prospective cohort study to assess the association between amount of mobile phone use at baseline and frequency...
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Background: Stroke incidence has declined during the past decades. Yet, there is a concern that an ageing population together with improved survival after stroke will result in a raised proportion of the population who have experienced a stroke, as well as increasing incidence rate of recurrent strokes, and, absolute numbers of strokes. The object...
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Background: The Swedish Cancer Register (SCR) is characterized by excellent quality and completeness overall, but the quality of the reporting may vary according to tumor site and age, and may change over time. The aim of the current study was to investigate the completeness of the reporting of central nervous system (CNS) tumor cases to the SCR....
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Vi diskuterade i en artikel år 2010 hur dödlighet och livslängd ut-vecklas i Sverige och utomlands [1]. De flesta länder har haft en enastående förbättring av medel livslängden. I Sverige och många andra länder i västvärl-den har ökningen pågått under åtminstone 150 år. I Sverige var medellivsläng-den under 2016 80,1 år för män och 84,1 för kvinnor...
Data
Extending the decomposition by the disease related mortality rate: Equations and illustrative example. (PDF)
Article
Background Populations are ageing and survival from many diseases including stroke has improved substantially over the past decades. Even if stroke incidence is declining as well, at least in the population 65 years and above, there is concern that the burden of stroke will increase in the coming decades, when the population grow larger and older....
Article
Background: Although studies have consistently found an association between childhood leukaemia risk and magnetic fields, the associations between childhood leukaemia and distance to overhead power lines have been inconsistent. We pooled data from multiple studies to assess the association with distance and evaluate whether it is due to magnetic f...
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Increasing longevity can distort time trends in summary measures of health and mortality, such as the lifetime risk of getting diseased. If not observing a cohort, this lifetime risk is calculated with cross-sectional data on age-specific incidence and survival. In those instances, incidence and survival may work in opposite directions resulting in...
Data
Mathematical derivation of the method: Omitted steps. (PDF)
Data
Extending the decomposition by the disease related mortality rate: Equations and illustrative example. (PDF)
Article
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Objective: To assess excess mortality among suicide attempters compared to the general population. Method: Remaining life expectancy was calculated for a nationwide cohort of all 187 894 persons 18 years or older hospitalised for the first time attempted suicide in Sweden in 1971-2010. Results: Life expectancy was shortened throughout the life...
Article
Introduction: Present knowledge concerning potential associations between comorbidities and the fatality of a first myocardial infarction (MI) is limited. Aim: To identify comorbidities in 45-70-year-old individuals who suffered a first MI and died within 7 days in Stockholm County from 1992-1994. In addition, to assess how each of the comorbidi...
Article
This study investigates validity of self-reported mobile phone use in a subset of 75 993 adults from the COSMOS cohort study. Agreement between self-reported and operator-derived mobile call frequency and duration for a 3-month period was assessed using Cohen's weighted Kappa (κ). Sensitivity and specificity of both self-reported high (≥10 calls/da...
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Aim: To illustrate how the fundamental epidemiological measures, incidence rate and prevalence proportion, can be estimated based on Swedish population registers using acute myocardial infarction (MI) as an example, together with a discussion about the analytical decisions. Methods: All individuals in Sweden aged 60-89 (born 1904-1954) during th...
Article
Objectives: The purpose of this study was to explore the pattern of mortality above the age of 100 years. In particular, we aimed to examine whether Scandinavian data support the theory that mortality reaches a plateau at particularly old ages. Whether the maximum length of life increases with time was also investigated. Methods: The analyses we...
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Background It is known that parents have lower mortality than childless individuals. Support from adult children to ageing parents may be of importance for parental health and longevity. The aim of this study was to estimate the association between having a child and the risk of death, and to examine whether the association increased at older ages...
Article
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Background: Out-of-hospital deaths due to a first myocardial infarction (MI) are frequent and a big challenge for prevention. Increased knowledge about factors influencing MI fatality is needed. Metabolic risk factors have been studied in relation to MI fatality in-hospital but studies considering also out-of-hospital deaths are few. Aim: To assess...
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Objectives The objective of this study was to analyse how hospitalisation after the age of 60 affected individuals' health-related quality of life (HRQoL). The main hypothesis was that a hospital admission in old age can be seen as a proxy of ill health and possibly as a health divider, separating life into a healthy and an unhealthy part. The exte...
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Background: Although meningioma is a benign tumour, it may cause significant morbidity. Obesity and diabetes are positively associated with meningioma. To evaluate the potential effects of obesity-related prediagnostic glucose, triglycerides and cholesterol on meningioma and of prediagnostic meningioma on these biomarkers, we conducted a cohort st...
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Background: The inverse association between education and mortality has grown stronger the last decades in many countries. During the same period, gains in life expectancy have been concentrated to older ages; still, old-age mortality is seldom the focus of attention when analyzing trends in the education-mortality gradient. It is further unknown...
Article
Background: Previous studies have reached different conclusions about whether health is improving in the ageing population. More studies with narrow age groups analyzed separately for men and women will contribute to the literature. Aim: To describe trends in self-reported indicators of health and health-related quality of life between 2002 and...
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Background: Data on the future diabetes burden in Scandinavia is limited. Our aim was to project the future burden of diabetes in Sweden by modelling data on incidence, prevalence, mortality, and demographic factors. Method: To project the future burden of diabetes we used information on the prevalence of diabetes from the national drug prescrip...
Data
Prevalence of diabetes in Sweden 2007–2013 and projections for 2014–2050 by age (Scenario A). (TIF)
Data
Approximated incidence of diabetes (per 1000) in Sweden 2007 to 2013 by age and sex. (DOCX)
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Background: Studies of related individuals have consistently demonstrated notable familial aggregation of cancer. We aim to estimate the heritability and genetic correlation attributable to the additive effects of common single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) for cancer at 13 anatomical sites.
Article
In a recent paper, Jansson et al. [1] describe time trends in the incidence and prevalence of diabetes in the Swedish population between 2005 and 2013. The main message is that incidence is decreasing and prevalence is increasing modestly, and furthermore that Sweden has a low prevalence of diabetes from a global perspective. The analyses are based...
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Hardell and Carlberg claim in a recent article that both the Cause of Death Register and the National Inpatient Care Register indicate that there was a severe and increasing underreporting of malignant brain tumors to the Swedish Cancer Register during recent years [1]. [...].
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Allergy is inversely related to glioma risk. To determine whether prediagnostic allergy-related serum proteins are associated with glioma, we conducted a nested case-control study of seven cytokines (IL4, IL13, IL5, IL6, IL10, IFNG, TGFB2), two soluble cytokine receptors (sIL4RA, sIL13RA2) and three allergy-related transcription factors (FOXP3, STA...
Article
Objective To quantify the risk of unprovoked seizures after traumatic brain injury (TBI)Methods We used the Stockholm Incidence Registry on Epilepsy to carry out a population-based case–control study, including 1,885 cases with incident unprovoked seizures from September 1, 2000 through August 31, 2008, together with 15,080 matched controls. Inform...
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There are no previous studies of the association between prediagnostic serum vitamin D concentration and glioma. Vitamin D has immunosuppressive properties; as does glioma. It was, therefore, our hypothesis that elevated vitamin D concentration would increase glioma risk. We conducted a nested case-control study using specimens from the Janus Serum...
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A highly increased risk of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) has been suggested among professional athletes. We aimed to examine whether long distance cross-country skiers have also a higher risk of ALS and whether the increased risk was modified by skiing performance. We followed 212,246 cross-country skiers in the Swedish Vasaloppet cohort and...
Article
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Background: Hip fracture is a common cause of disability and mortality among the elderly. Declining incidence trends have been observed in Sweden. Still, this condition remains a significant public health problem since Sweden has one of the highest incidences worldwide. Yet, no Swedish lifetime risk or survival trends have been presented. By exami...
Article
We confirmed strong association of rs78378222:A>C (per allele odds ratio = 3.14; P = 6.48×10(-11) ), a germline rare single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in TP53, via imputation of a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of glioma (1856 cases and 4955 controls). We subsequently performed integrative analyses on the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) data fo...
Article
Background: Snus is a smokeless tobacco product, widely used among Swedish men and increasingly so elsewhere. There is debate as to whether snus is an acceptable "harm-reduction" tobacco product. Since snus use delivers a dose of nicotine equivalent to cigarettes, and has been implicated in cardiac arrhythmia because of associations with sudden ca...