Mortality Detail File: External Cause Extract, 1968-1978, 1979-1980 (ICPSR 8224)

Published: Jan 12, 2006

Principal Investigator(s):
United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Center for Health Statistics


Version V1

The Mortality Detail File: External Cause Extract is a special subset of data prepared from the MORTALITY DETAIL FILES, 1968-1991 (ICPSR 7632). Due to changes in Cause of Death definitions incorporated in the INTERNATIONAL CLASSIFICATION OF DISEASES, NINTH REVISION (ICD-9), the 1968-1978 data files differ slightly from the 1979-1980 data files. The 1968-1978 data reflect cause of death codes of the INTERNATIONAL CLASSIFICATION OF DISEASES ADAPTED FOR USE IN THE UNITED STATES, EIGHTH REVISION (ICDA-8). The period immediately following (1979-80) utilizes ICD-9 cause of death codes. In addition to the differences in the Cause of Death codes and recodes, the 1979-1980 data include three variables not available in the 1968-1978 datasets. These are: mortality by marital status, state or country of birth, and place of death and status of decedent when death occurred in a hospital or medical center. With these exceptions, the data are similar in structure and content to the 1968-1978 data and provide detailed personal and geographic information such as month and day of death, decedent's race and gender, age of deceased at time of death, place of decedent's residence (specific to the city level), place of death (specific to the county level), and whether an autopsy was performed. The 1979-1980 files also contain new variables pertinent to criminal justice research: handgun versus other gun accidents, handgun versus other firearm suicides, handgun versus other firearm homicides, and drug poison versus other poison homicides.

United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Center for Health Statistics. Mortality Detail File: External Cause Extract, 1968-1978, 1979-1980. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2006-01-12.

Export Citation:

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In preparing the data file(s) for this collection, the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) has removed direct identifiers and characteristics that might lead to identification of data subjects. As an additional precaution, NCHS requires, under Section 308(d) of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 242m), that data collected by NCHS not be used for any purpose other than statistical analysis and reporting. NCHS further requires that analysts not use the data to learn the identity of any persons or establishments and that the director of NCHS be notified if any identities are inadvertently discovered. ICPSR member institutions and other users ordering data from ICPSR are expected to adhere to these restrictions.

1968 -- 1980

Per agreement with NCHS, ICPSR distributes the data files and technical documentation in this collection in their original form as prepared by NCHS.

All deaths that were classified as "externally" caused and are subsets of MORTALITY DETAIL FILES, 1968-1991 (ICPSR 7632). "External" causes of death are not medical diagnoses, but describe the circumstances under which an accident or act of violence occurred.

Every death or fetal death registered in the 50 states and the District of Columbia.


aggregate data, and clinical data



2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 14 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.

1984-07-12 ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Performed consistency checks.
  • Standardized missing values.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.


  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions.

  • The citation of this study may have changed due to the new version control system that has been implemented.
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This study is maintained and distributed by the National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA), the aging program within ICPSR. NACDA is sponsored by the National Institute on Aging (NIA) at the National Institutes of Heath (NIH).