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Heart Disease Fact Sheet

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Heart Disease Death Rates, 2008-2010. Age adjusted average annual deaths per 100,000 among adults ages 35 and older, by county. Rates range from 109.8 to 750.8 per 100,000. Counties with the highest rates are located primarily in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, southern Georgia, eastern Kentucky, northeastern Michigan, and southern California.

Heart Disease Facts

  • Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. More than half of the deaths due to heart disease in 2009 were in men.1
  • About 610,000 Americans die from heart disease each year—that’s 1 in every 4 deaths.1
  • Coronary heart disease is the most common type of heart disease, killing more than 370,000 people annually.1
  • In the United States, someone has a heart attack every 43 seconds. Each minute, someone in the United States dies from a heart disease-related event.2
  • Heart disease is the leading cause of death for people of most racial/ethnic groups in the United States, including African Americans, Hispanics, and whites. For Asian Americans or Pacific Islanders and American Indians or Alaska Natives, heart disease is second only to cancer.3
  • Coronary heart disease alone costs the United States $108.9 billion each year.4 This total includes the cost of health care services, medications, and lost productivity.

Risk Factors

High blood pressure, high LDL cholesterol, and smoking are key heart disease risk factors for heart disease. About half of Americans (49%) have at least one of these three risk factors.5

Several other medical conditions and lifestyle choices can also put people at a higher risk for heart disease, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Poor diet
  • Physical inactivity
  • Excessive alcohol use

CDC's Public Health Efforts Related to Heart Disease

For More Information

For more information on heart disease, visit the following Web sites.

Resources

  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. Underlying Cause of Death 1999-2013 on CDC WONDER Online Database, released 2015. Data are from the Multiple Cause of Death Files, 1999-2013, as compiled from data provided by the 57 vital statistics jurisdictions through the Vital Statistics Cooperative Program: http://wonder.cdc.gov/ucd-icd10.html. Accessed on Feb 3, 2015.
  2. Mozzafarian D, Benjamin EJ, Go AS, et al. on behalf of the American Heart Association Statistics Committee and Stroke Statistics Subcommittee. Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics – 2015 Update: a report from the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2015;131:e29-e322.
  3. Heron M. Deaths: Leading causes for 2008 [PDF-2.7M]. National vital statistics reports. 2012;60(6).
  4. Heidenriech PA, Trogdon JG, Khavjou OA, Butler J, Dracup K, Ezekowitz MD, et al. Forecasting the future of cardiovascular disease in the United States: a policy statement from the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2011;123(8):933–44.
  5. CDC. Million Hearts™: strategies to reduce the prevalence of leading cardiovascular disease risk factors. United States, 2011. MMWR 2011;60(36):1248–51.
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