200,000 annual heart disease and stroke deaths could be prevented, CDC says

200,000 annual heart disease and stroke deaths could be prevented, CDC says

September 3, 2013 Updated Sep 3, 2013 at 3:59 PM CDT

(CDC news release) According to a news release issued Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said more than 200,000 preventable deaths from heart disease and stroke occurred in the United States in 2010, with more than half of the deaths happened to people younger than 65 years of age.

According to the CDC news release:

A new Vital Signs report looked at preventable deaths from heart disease and stroke defined as those that occurred in people under age 75 that could have been prevented by more effective public health measures, lifestyle changes or medical care.

Cardiovascular diseases, including heart disease and stroke, kill nearly 800,000 Americans each year or one in three deaths.  However, the report notes that most cardiovascular disease can be managed or prevented in the first place by addressing risk factors.

While the number of preventable deaths has declined in people aged 65 to 74 years, it has remained unchanged in people under age 65.  Men are more than twice as likely as women — and blacks twice as likely as whites — to die from preventable heart disease and stroke.

“Despite progress against heart disease and stroke, hundreds of thousands of Americans die each year from these preventable causes of death,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “Many of the heart attacks and strokes that will kill people in the coming year could be prevented by reducing blood pressure and cholesterol and stopping smoking.”

Key facts in the Vital Signs report about the risk of preventable death from heart disease and stroke:

Age: Death rates in 2010 were highest among adults aged 65-74 years (401.5 per 100,000 population).  But preventable deaths have declined faster in those aged 65–74 years compared to those under age 65.

Race/ethnicity: Blacks are twice as likely—and Hispanics are slightly less likely—as whites to die from preventable heart disease and stroke.

Sex: Avoidable deaths from heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure were higher among males (83.7 per 100,000) than females (39.6 per 100,000).  Black men have the highest risk. Hispanic men are twice as likely as Hispanic women to die from preventable heart disease and stroke.

Location: By state, avoidable deaths from cardiovascular disease ranged from a rate of 36.3 deaths per 100,000 population in Minnesota to 99.6 deaths per 100,000 in the District of Columbia.  By county, the highest avoidable death rates in 2010 were concentrated primarily in the southern Appalachian region and much of Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Oklahoma.  The lowest rates were in the West, Midwest, and Northeast regions.

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