Stress, Famine and the Fetal Programming: The Long Term Effect of WWII in Italy

61 Pages Posted: 24 Jun 2016 Last revised: 13 Jul 2016

Vincenzo Atella

University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Centre for International Studies on Economic Growth (CEIS); Department of Economics and Finance; University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Faculty of Economics

Edoardo Di Porto

University of Naples Federico II

Joanna Kopinska

University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Faculty of Economics; University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Centre for International Studies on Economic Growth (CEIS)

Date Written: June 23, 2016

Abstract

This paper analyses the eff ect of in utero and at birth exposure to WWII intensity on long-run health and economic outcomes. We link individual clinical electronic records collected by General Practitioners (GPs) for a large sample of Italian adults with detailed information on the intensity of exposure to WWII conflict, disaggregated by month and province of birth. Under weak assumptions, which we discuss and test carefully, our analysis provides a lower bound of the long-run causal e ffect of WWII intensity on adult health. We show that individuals exposed to intense WWII conflicts while in utero are more likely to present health problems In particular, we fi nd that early life stress caused by the war increases the probability of Dislipidemia and Depression, while famine increases the probability of Diabetes and Obesity. We find that these e ffects are heterogeneous across the trimester of exposure during pregnancy and across moments of outcome realisation later in life.

Keywords: War exposure, Stress, Famine, Fetal programming, Charlson Index, Chronic diseases, Health expenditure, Italy

JEL Classification: I1, O1

Suggested Citation

Atella, Vincenzo and Di Porto, Edoardo and Kopinska, Joanna, Stress, Famine and the Fetal Programming: The Long Term Effect of WWII in Italy (June 23, 2016). CEIS Working Paper No. 385. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2799641

Vincenzo Atella (Contact Author)

University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Centre for International Studies on Economic Growth (CEIS) ( email )

Via Columbia, 2
Rome, I-00133
Italy
+39 06 72595648 (Phone)

Department of Economics and Finance ( email )

Via Columbia 2
Roma, 00133
Italy

University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Faculty of Economics ( email )

Via Columbia n.2
I-00133 Rome, 00133
Italy
+39 06 72595635 (Phone)
+30 06 2020 500 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.economia.uniroma2.it/sefemeq/professori/atella/

Edoardo Di Porto

University of Naples Federico II ( email )

via Cinthia, 4
Naples, Caserta 80126
Italy

Joanna Kopinska

University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Faculty of Economics ( email )

Via Columbia n.2
Rome, rome 00100
Italy

University of Rome, Tor Vergata - Centre for International Studies on Economic Growth (CEIS) ( email )

Via Columbia, 2
Rome
Italy

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