Report Reveals Staggering Global Stroke and CVD Statistics

Elevated blood pressure is reported to cause 51 percent of stroke deaths and 45 percent of coronary heart disease deaths, according to an environmental scan report recently published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

The alarming stroke statistics are particularly of interest as the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association hold the annual International Stroke Conference Feb. 6 – 8 in Honolulu, Hawaii.

The report also illustrates findings that stroke mortality exceeds ischemic heart disease mortality in 74 World Health Organization (WHO) member countries, with China, Africa and South America having an excessively higher rate of stroke that the other countries. In addition, the study reveals that despite the projection that heart disease and stroke will be the leading cause of death through the year 2030, only 150 new cardiovascular drugs are in development, contrasted with the more than 700 underway for the treatment of cancer.

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According to the authors, the report provides "a timely snapshot of the socioeconomic, political and scientific aspects" of the cardiovascular environment both domestically and abroad. Cardiovascular disease, which now makes up nearly half of non-communicable diseases, is the leading global cause of death and accounts for 17.3 million deaths per year, expected to grow to more than 23.6 million for 2030. The authors also describe other factors affecting the global landscape of cardiovascular disease, including the changing dynamics of payment and delivery of care, physician workforce, relationships with industry, research and prevention.

The report touches on ACC's partnership with the Million Hearts Initiative, a public private campaign which has set out to prevent one million cardiovascular events over the next five years. Another ACC inititative focused on prevention and patient education is CardioSmart, which recently launched its updated website,, which features sections on each of the most common heart conditions, including stroke. Patients can learn more about their condition, get advice on what questions to ask their doctor, take part in health challenges with others in the CardioSmart community and more. CardioSmart also offers more than 200 patient fact sheets on a range of topics including stroke, which can help answer questions to common questions for patients.

Keywords: Myocardial Ischemia, Stroke, Neoplasms, South America, Coronary Disease, Blood Pressure, Heart Diseases, Cause of Death, China, Cardiovascular Agents, Cardiology, Hawaii, United States

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