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Ugeskr Laeger. 2000 Feb 28;162(9):1227-30.

[Causes of death of German refugee children in 1945].

[Article in Danish]

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Frederiksborg Amt, Laboratorierne for biokemi og immunologi.


In the last months of the second World War, 250,000 German refugees landed in Denmark. A third of them were children under the age of 15. Seven thousand German refugee children under the age of five died in Denmark in 1945. Using birth certificates and death certificates from the Danish national archives and burial lists from the German refugee cemetaries I have collected data to reveal causes of death, age distributions and time of the deaths of the 7000 fatal cases among children under the age of five. Three thousand children under the age of one, 2000 children one year old and 2000 children 2-4 years old died. Most of them died just before and after the German surrender, but many died in the months following the German surrender. The infant mortality was extremely high all during 1945. The infants died from diseases due to malnutrition, but the older the children the more likely the causes of death were due to infectious diseases such as pneumonia, measles, diphtheria and gastroenteritis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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