The Danish Conscription Database - DCD

The Danish Conscription Database (DCD) is based on a digitization of the conscript board records of 728.160 Danish men born from 1939 through 1959 and examined from 1957 through 1984.
According to Danish law all young men are to have their physical and mental abilities examined at the Danish Conscript Board between the ages of 18 and 26 to assess their suitability for military service. The data collected at the conscript board examinations has since 1957 been recorded in a standardized format on register cards. The information contained in the DCD includes height, weight, level of education, intelligence test score, conscript board district (see map) and time of conscript board examination.
The DCD is a large-scale national cohort which enables studies of the influence of early physical and mental exposures on adverse health and social outcomes.

The conscript board data has been collected systematically and stored with virtually no loss. Thus DCD provides extensive coverage, which is essential in the application of data for scientific research.
By using personally identifiable information, the collected conscript data can be linked to Danish national health and socioeconomic registers, and hence it is possible to follow a large group of men from early to late adulthood.



















The DCD has been described and documented in the Cohort Profile: The Danish Conscription Database (DCD)

So far data from the DCD has been applied in studies concerning the topics of obesity, metabolism, risk of diseases and cognitive ability. For instance Christensen et al 2016 (Christensen et al 2016) have found an inverse association between intelligence assessed at the conscript board and mortality from natural and unnatural (accidents, suicide, and homicide) causes. Data have also been included in large scale international population studies of trends in height (NCD-RisC Height) and weight (NCD-RisC Weight)

Publications with data from the Danish Conscription Database (February 2019):

  1. Grønkjær M, Osler M, Flensborg-Madsen T, Sørensen HJ, Mortensen EL. Associations between education and age-related cognitive changes from early adulthood to late midlife.Psychology and Aging. Accepted and in press 2019

  2. Hegelund ER, Flensborg-Madsen T, Dammeyer J & Mortensen El. Low IQ as a predictor of unsuccessful educational and occupational achievement: A register-based study of 1,098,742 men in Denmark 1968-2016. Intelligence. 71:46-53, 2018

  3. Nissen LR, Karstoft KI, Vedtofte MS, Nielsen ABS, Osler M, Mortensen EL, Christensen GT, Andersen SB. Low-level cognitive ability in young adulthood and other risk factors of depression in an observational cohort study among deployed Danish soldiers. Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. Jan 2019

  4. Osler M, Christensen GT, Mortensen EL, Christensen K, Garde E, Rozing MP.Hearing loss, cognitive ability, and dementia in men age 19-78 years. Eur JEpidemiol. 2018 Oct

  5. Christensen GT, Rozing MP, Mortensen EL, Christensen K, Osler M. Young adult cognitive ability and subsequent major depression in a cohort of 666,804 Danish men. J Affect Dis. April 2018

  6. Christensen GT, Skogstad S, Nissen LR, Osler M. Data resource profile: Danish Conscription Registry Data (DCRD). Int J Epidemiol. April 2018

  7. Osler M, Rozing MP, Christensen GT, Andersen PK, Jørgensen MB. Electroconvulsive therapy and risk of dementia in a cohort of 168 015 patients with affective disorders. Lancet Psych 2018: 5:348-353.
  1. Wüst M, Mortensen EL, Osler M, Sørensen TIA. Universal infant health interventions and young adult outcomes. Health Econ. Aug 2018

  2. Jensen BW, Bjerregaard LG, Ängquist L, Gögenur I, Renehan AG, Osler M, Sørensen TIA, Baker JL. Change in Overweight from Childhood to Early Adulthood and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes Int J Obes (Lond). Oct 2018

  3. Bjerregaard LG1, Jensen BW, Ängquist L, Osler M, Sørensen TIA, Baker JL. Change in Overweight from Childhood to Early Adulthood and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes. N Engl J Med. 2018 Apr 5;378(14):1302-1312

  4. Osler M, Mortensen EL, Christensen K, Christensen GT. A bidirectional association between cognitive ability in young adulthood  and epilepsy: A population based cohort study. Int J Epidemiol 2018 Epub Feb 12.

  5. NCD Risk Factor Collaboration (NCD-RisC)*. Worldwide trends in body-mass index, underweight, overweight, and obesity from 1975 to 2016: a pooled analysis of 2416population-based measurement studies in 128•9 million children, adolescents, and adults. Lancet. Oct. 2017

  6. Nissen LR, Karstoft KI, Vedtofte MS, Nielsen ABS, Osler M, Mortensen EL,Christensen GT, Andersen SB. Cognitive ability and risk of post-traumatic stress disorder after military deployment: an observational cohort study. BJPsych Open. 2017 Nov 8;3(6):274-280.

  7. Christensen, G.T., et al., The influence of familial factors on the intelligence-mortality association – A twin approach. Intelligence, 2017. 64: p. 60-66.

  8. Osler, M., et al., Cognitive ability in young adulthood and risk of dementia in a cohort of Danish men, brothers, and twins. Alzheimers Dement, 2017.

  9. Jørgensen TSH, Osler M, Ängquist LH, Zimmermann E, Christensen GT, Sørensen TIA. The U-shaped association of body mass index with mortality: influence of the traits height, intelligence and education. Obesity Sept 2016, doi:10.1002/oby. 21615.

  10. Christensen GT, Mortensen EL, Christensen K, Osler M. Intelligence in young adulthood and all-cause and cause specific mortality in the Danish Conscription Database- a cohort study of 728,160 men.Intelligence Epub 23 August 2016.

  11. NCD Risk factor collaboration (NCD-RisC)* A century of trends in adult human height: pooled analysis of 1,472 population-based measurement studies with 19,2 million participants. Elife, Epub 26 July 2016.

  12. Aarestrup J, Bjerregaard L, Gamborg M, Ängquist L, Tjønneland A, Overvad K, Linneberg A, Osler M, Mortensen EL, Gyntelberg F, Lund R, Sørensen TIA, Baker J.Tracking of body mass index from 7 to 69 years of age. Int J Obes 2016, 28 June.

  13. NCD Risk factor collaboration (NCD-RisC)* The weight of the World-trends in adult body mass index in 200 countries since 1975: pooled analysis of 1,698 population-based measurement studies with 19,2 million participants. The Lancet 2016;387:1377-96.

  14. Christensen GT, Molbo M, Ängquist LH, Mortensen EL, Christensen K, Sørensen TIA, Osler M. Cohort profile: The Danish Conscription Database (DCD). A cohort of 728 160 men born from 1939 through 1959 and examined by the conscript board in the period from 1957 through 1984. Int J Epidemiol 2015;44:432-40.