Rates of firearm fatalities are increasing in the United States and different demographic groups have been affected differently.  

Spike in Firearm Fatalities Differ Among Ethnic and Age Groups

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Chris A. Rees, MD, MPH
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Emergency Medicine
Research Director, Pediatric Emergency Medicine Fellowship
Emory University School of Medicine
Attending Physician, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
Pediatric Research Scientist, CHAMPS, U.S. Program Office  and

Eric W. Fleegler, MD, MPH, FAAP
Associate in Pediatrics, Division of Emergency Medicine
Director Sedation Service
Boston Children’s Hospital
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Emergency Medicine
Harvard Medical School

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: Rates of firearm fatalities in the United States have reached a 28-year high. Yet, an understanding of the specific demographic groups who have been most affected, and where in the United States these fatalities have occurred, has not been clearly described in the past.

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?

Response:  This study’s main findings are that during a 32-year period, there were over 1 million firearm fatalities in the United States. Rates of firearm fatalities substantially increased in 2019 to 2021. Homicides by firearms most commonly occurred among Black, non-Hispanic males aged 20-24 years. In contrast, suicides by firearms occurred most often among White, non-Hispanic men aged 80-84 years. Additionally, firearm fatalities have traditionally been most common in the Western United States but become more common in the Southeastern United States during the study period.  

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Rates of firearm fatalities are increasing in the United States and different demographic groups have been affected differently.    

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a results of this study?

Response: With the increase in firearm fatality rates in the United States, there is an urgent need for targeted interventions for at risk populations which may include community-based interventions such as violence intervention programs, firearm buybacks, safe firearm storage programs, suicide prevention programs, and targeted state legislation.  

No disclosures to report.


Rees CA, Monuteaux MC, Steidley I, et al. Trends and Disparities in Firearm Fatalities in the United States, 1990-2021. JAMA Netw Open. 2022;5(11):e2244221. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2022.44221

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Editor’s note: This piece discusses suicide. If you have experienced suicidal thoughts or have lost someone to suicide and want to seek help, you can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741 or call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.

Last Updated on November 29, 2022 by Marie Benz MD FAAD