Married gay men, but not lesbians, live longer

(Photo: Kelly Sajonia)

(Photo: Kelly Sajonia)

BY STEVE WILLIAMS
Care2

new study suggests gay men in same-sex marriages live longer than their single counterparts, but that marriage is no longer helping lesbians live longer. The study, published last week in the International Journal of Epidemiology, took Denmark’s civil registry and used it to follow 6.5 million adults from 1982 to 2011. Because same-sex unions have been legal in Denmark since 1989, the study offers a unique chance to study the long term impact of partnership and marriage equality.

Researchers found that mortality rates for married gay men declined sharply during the study period and is now only just above that of heterosexual unmarried or divorced men. Interestingly, however, researchers found that during the study period, the same benefit could not be evidenced for married lesbian couples who, researchers found, faced an increasing mortality rate during the time period. This comes after what had been a steady decline in mortality rates for women.

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