Price of fame and success: play hard and die young

Professor Richard Epstein from St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney looked at 1000 obituaries published between 2009 and 2011 to determine whether patterns of disease characterised the careers of famous people.

The study found those in the performing and sports category, which included singers, musicians and dancers, died nearly six years younger on average than those who achieved fame in business, politics or the military.

The performers/sports group’s average age at death was 77, compared with 78 in the creative group (which included writers

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