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Monday, 1 June, 1998, 12:51 GMT 13:51 UK
Left-handed people 'don't die young'
Some lefties live along time -look at Churchill!
Winston Churchill lived into his nineties despite being lefthanded
In times past, left-handed people were thought to be the children of the devil, but a scientific study published this week suggests that sinistrals are not as cursed as was once thought.

Some studies have indicated that left handers are more likely to die prematurely than their right handed counterparts. It was thought that left handers may be more prone to accidents because their sense of spatial awareness is not as acute as right handers.

But new research in the Lancet suggests that left handers are at no greater risk of dying earlier.

Investigators sent a questionnaire inquiring about handedness to people aged between 15 and 70 years. They received 6,097 correctly completed responses.

Nine years later they attempted to trace the respondents. Research revealed that 5,662 were still alive, 387 had died, and 48 could not be traced.

However further analysis revealed that handedness was not related to longevity.

The researchers, led by Dr Simon Ellis, from the Department of Neurology, North Staffordshire, concluded: "Handedness did not make a significant contribution to the outcome of death."

See also:

19 May 98 | Politics of Health
11 May 98 | Science/Nature
11 May 98 | Science/Nature
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