Many diseases are affected by changes in weather. There have been limited studies, however, which have examined the relationship between heat and cold and cause-specific mortality in low and middle-income countries. In this study, we aimed to estimate the effects of heat and cold days on total and cause-specific mortality in the Vadu Health and Demographic Surveillance System (HDSS) area in western India. We used a quasi-Poisson regression model allowing for over-dispersion to examine the association of total and cause-specific mortality with extreme high (98th percentile, >39 °C) and low temperature (2nd percentile, <25 °C) over the period January 2003 to December 2012. Delays of 0 and 0–4 days were considered and relative risks (RR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated. Heat was significantly associated with daily deaths by non-infectious diseases (RR = 1.57; CI: 1.18–2.10). There was an increase in the risk of total mortality in the age group 12–59 years on lag 0 day (RR = 1.43; CI: 1.02–1.99). A high increase in total mortality was observed among men at lag 0 day (RR = 1.38; CI: 1.05–1.83). We did not find any short-term association between total and cause-specific mortality and cold days. Deaths from neither infectious nor external causes were associated with heat or cold. Our results showed a strong and rather immediate relationship between high temperatures and non-infectious disease mortality in a rural population located in western India, during 2003–2012. This study may be used to develop targeted interventions such as Heat Early Warning Systems in the area to reduce mortality from extreme temperatures.
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