There has been increasing attention to professional athletes’ long-term health. A few studies1-3 reported lower all-cause mortality among Major League Baseball (MLB) players compared with US males, but only 1 study with a small sample (n = 985) examined specific causes of death and reported largely nonsignificant results.3 Players in MLB may have lower cause-specific mortality rates because of fitness associated with playing baseball, but other sport-related aspects—injuries, lifestyle habits, or environmental exposures particular to baseball—could adversely affect players’ health. We recently found lower mortality rates among MLB players overall and for certain specific causes compared with National Football League players, all of whom had playing careers of 5 years or longer.4 To better understand risks compared with the general public, we examined mortality rates among MLB players, including specific causes of death and differences by career length and position.
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Nguyen VT, Zafonte RD, Kponee-Shovein KZ, Paganoni S, Weisskopf MG. All-Cause and Cause-Specific Mortality Among Major League Baseball Players. JAMA Intern Med. Published online July 22, 2019179(9):1298–1301. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.1218
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