Research from Denmark appears to confirm the popular perception that one of the reasons for higher male mortality is that men tend to seek help from a health professional later than women.
Knud Juel from the University of Southern Denmark analysed 35.8 million contacts with GPs and 1.2 million hospitalizations from 2005. He concludes: ‘at all ages women have higher rates of contacts to general practitioners than men with a peak between ages 15 and 35. Between ages 15 and 50, women also have higher rates of hospital admissions (although this) is strongly influenced by women’s hospitalization in connection with childbirth. Excluding these together with all sex-specific conditions makes the sex difference disappear. For age 50 and older, men have higher rates of hospitalization.’
That early GP contact appears to pay off with reduced hospitalisation later in life. The graph below shows the detail.