The Mortality Statistical Query System allows users to make selections from a number of variables to create their own tables. One of those variables is cause of death, which is presented in standard categories of public health importance such as diabetes, cancer, accidents, etc., to make it easy for users to select areas of interest.
For tabulation purposes, causes of death are coded according to the International Classification of Diseases (ICD). However, the ICD is revised periodically to stay current with changes in medical science. The tenth revision of the ICD, known as ICD-10, is the latest version and was first used to code cause of death for deaths that occurred in 1999. The previous version of the ICD, ICD-9, was used to code cause of death for deaths occurring from 1979 through 1998.
In addition to the changes in coding for cause of death, the groupings of standard categories developed by the National Center for Health Statistics are not identical for ICD-9 and ICD-10. Thus, the Mortality Statistical Query System is divided into two parts: deaths for 1990-1998, which are coded according to ICD-9, and deaths for 1999-2011, which are coded according to ICD-10.
Users should note that changes in the ICD from one revision to another and changes in the standard groupings might cause discontinuities in trend data. Therefore, caution should be used in making comparisons for a particular cause over the two ICD versions. For more information, see Cause of Death in the Help section.