Volume 26 - Article 9 | Pages 191–206  

Discussing the Strehler-Mildvan model of mortality

By Maxim Finkelstein


Background: Half a century ago Strehler and Mildvan (1960) have published the seminal paper that, based on some assumptions (postulates), theoretically 'justified' the Gompertz law of mortality.

Objective: We wish to discuss assumptions and limitations of the original Strehler-Mildvan model (as well as of the Strehler-Mildvan correlation) and consider some modifications and departures from this model.

Methods: We use the framework of stochastic point processes for analyzing the original Strehler-Mildvan model. We also suggest the 'lifesaving approach' for describing the departure from rectangularization to shifts in survival curves for human mortality that has been observed in the second half of the previous century.

Results: We show that the Strehler-Mildvan model can be justified only under the additional assumption that the process of shocks (demands for energy) follows the Poisson pattern. We also suggest a modification that accounts for the oldest-old mortality plateau.

Author's Affiliation

Other articles by the same author/authors in Demographic Research

Survival as a Function of Life Expectancy
Volume 21 - Article 29

The relative tail of longevity and the mean remaining lifetime
Volume 14 - Article 7

On stochastic comparisons of population age structures and life expectancies
Volume 13 - Article 6

Most recent similar articles in Demographic Research

Age and COVID-19 mortality: A comparison of Gompertz doubling time across countries and causes of death
Volume 44 - Article 16    | Keywords: aging, COVID-19, Gompertz law, mortality

The impact of proportional changes in age-specific mortality on life expectancy when the mortality rate is a log-linear function of age
Volume 39 - Article 23    | Keywords: force of mortality, Gompertz distribution, life expectancy

An empirical analysis of the importance of controlling for unobserved heterogeneity when estimating the income-mortality gradient
Volume 31 - Article 30    | Keywords: income, mortality, proportional hazards, unobserved heterogeneity

Shaping human mortality patterns through intrinsic and extrinsic vitality processes
Volume 28 - Article 12    | Keywords: adult mortality, extrinsic mortality, intrinsic mortality, mortality, stochastic processes, vitality

Variance in death and its implications for modeling and forecasting mortality
Volume 24 - Article 21    | Keywords: entropy, inequality, proportional hazards

Cited References: 30

Download to Citation Manager

Article ID