Birth Month May Determine Diseases At Risk For

Your birth month might determine more than just your astrological sign. The month you’re born also could determine some of your health risks. Data could help scientists uncover new disease risk factors. New study from Columbia University Medical Center.

Scientists reviewed NY medical databases for 1.7 million patients born between 1900-2000 and treated between 1985 and 2013 between the ages 20-60.

The study was published in the Journal of American Medical Informatics Association in June. 


Researchers found people’s birth months were linked with risk of getting one or more of 55 diseases.


Data could help scientists uncover new disease risk factors

High-risk months and low-risk months were identified. Here are the key findings:

  • May: lowest risk of disease overall
  • October, November: highest risk of disease overall
  • March: highest risk of heart disease
  • September, October: higher risk of respiratory disease and early winter babies have higher risk of developing reproductive diseases and neurological diseases
  • 10 cardiovascular diseases were tied to people’s birth month especially during winter months (highest risk)
  • Both cardiomyopathy (heart muscle disease) and hypertension (high blood pressure) were highest among those born in January, and lowest among people born in September and October.
  • Scientists not clear on why heart disease may be higher in people born during the winter
  • More infections in pregnant women during winter months and infections contribute to increased cardiovascular disease among children born at time of year
  • Risk of ADHD was higher in people born during later months of the year
  • Risk peaked for people born in November

Researchers didn’t analyze factors or variations among ethnicities or socioeconomic factors which couldn’t effect the results. Researchers warn study should be taken with grain of salt.

Person’s health is not entirely pre-determined by when they were born and isn’t necessarily something people should worry about when having children. Researchers plan to take their findings and duplicate it using a wider study group, incorporating databases from other areas in the USA and abroad.

Previous research has shown people born in winter months (days shorter) may not get enough sun to produce normal levels of vitamin D in the body.

  1. More likely to have vitamin D deficiency
  2. Increased risk for cardiovascular disease
  3. Birth in late summer of fall connected likelihood of asthma or respiratory problems
    1. Mothers pregnant in winter may be more likely to catch the flu or other infections

More studies are needed. Lead researcher and scientists are collaborating with 40 other institutions around the world to standardize patient electronic health records so anonymous data could be studied for possible explanations of birth month trends

Database will include:

  • Environmental factors of birth month trends
    • Pollution
    • Secondhand smoke

To see which conditions you might be more vulnerable to developing, find your birth month in the wheel below.