Facts About Cardiovascular Disease: CDC-OC


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Article title: Facts About Cardiovascular Disease: CDC-OC
Conditions: Cardiovascular Disease, Heart disease, stroke, Coronary heart disease
Source: CDC-OC

Facts About Cardiovascular Disease

June 27, 1997

  • Cardiovascular disease includes heart disease and stroke. About 57 million Americans live with some form of cardiovascular disease, which causes more than 40% of all deaths in the United States; 950,000 Americans every year. Heart disease and stroke cost the nation almost $260 billion annually.
  • Heart disease is the leading cause of death for older Americans, and is the leading cause of death for all Americans age 35 and older. Coronary heart disease (CHD), also known as ischemic heart disease, is the most frequent cause of death in the United States -- accounting for 481,458 deaths in 1994.
  • Death rates from CHD decreased dramatically during the 1960s and 1970s, with slower declines occurring during the 1980s. The recent data for the 1990s indicate that the rate of decline in CHD deaths is continuing to slow down. These slowdowns in the rate of the decline of heart disease deaths may mean that progress in reducing these deaths is in jeopardy. Proven current programs and policies may need to be strengthened such as:
    • Widespread availability of affordable heart healthy foods,
    • Cigarette smoking prevention and cessation activities that address the social, economic, and marketing aspects of tobacco use,
    • Enhanced opportunities for physical activity among all Americans, and
    • Utilization of medical care facilities for prevention of hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol.
Cardiovascular Disease in Louisiana
  • From 1991 through 1994, Louisiana men and women aged 45 years and older had the second and third highest average annual age-adjusted death rate from cardiovascular disease in the United States.
  • In a study using 1991-1995 data from the Louisiana Behavior Risk Factor Surveillance System, it was found that:
    • High blood pressure was the most prevalent cardiovascular disease risk factor in both men and women aged 45 and older. It is known that less than 25% of those with high blood pressure have it under control. Strategies to prevent high blood pressure include weight control, moderate physical activity, and limiting salt and alcohol intake
    • Nearly three-fourths of all Louisianans aged 45 and older had at least one of four major risk factors for heart disease: hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes, and obesity.

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