Seniors between age 65 through 74 are reducing death rates
from heart disease and stroke but those under 65 are seeing
their death rate increase.
Health & Medicine for Senior Citizens
CDC report finds 200,000 heart
disease and stroke deaths could have been prevented in 2010
With Obamacare, more Americans should
be saved, as more will have access to health coverage and preventive
care, including young people, other medically underserved groups
Aug. 3, 2013 - Preventable deaths
from heart disease or stroke declined faster in 2010 among senior
citizens age 65 through 74 years compared to
those under age 65. The bad news is these 65 through 74 seniors still
have the highest death rates for those under 75. And, over half
of these preventable deaths were people who had not reached their 65th
Among all those under 75 in the U.S.
more than 200,000 preventable deaths from heart disease and stroke
occurred in 2010, according to a new
Vital Signs report from the Centers for Disease Control and
The 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
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
6574 years compared to those under age 65.
Blacks are twice as likelyand Hispanics are slightly less likelyas
whites to die from preventable heart disease and stroke.
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.
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.
The overall rate of preventable
deaths from heart disease and stroke went down nearly 30 percent between
2001 and 2010, with the declines varying by age.
Lack of access to
preventive screenings and early treatment for high blood pressure and
high cholesterol could explain the differences among age groups.
Through the Affordable Care Act, more Americans will have access to
health coverage and preventive care, including young people and other
medically underserved groups.
To save more lives from these
preventable deaths, doctors, nurses, and other health care providers can
encourage healthy habits at every patient visit, including not smoking,
increasing physical activity, eating a healthy diet, maintaining a
healthy weight, and taking medicines as directed.
Nearly 800,000 Americans die each
year from heart disease and stroke.
Most of the major risk factors can
be managed or prevented
Risk factors and solutions for
High blood pressure
Make control your goal.
High cholesterol Work
with your doctor on a treatment
plan to manage your cholesterol.
Diabetes Work with your
doctor on a treatment plan to
manage your diabetes.
Tobacco use If you
don't smoke, dont start. If you
do smoke get help to quit.
Unhealthy diet Eat a
healthy diet, low in sodium and
trans fats and high in fresh
fruits and vegetables.
Physical inactivity The
Surgeon General recommends
adults engage in moderate
intensity exercise for 2 hours
and 30 minutes every week.
Obesity Work to
maintain a healthy weight.
Providers should track patient
progress on the ABCS of heart health aspirin when appropriate, blood
pressure control, cholesterol management, and smoking cessation. Health
care systems can adopt and use electronic health records to identify
patients who smoke or who have high blood pressure or high cholesterol
and help providers follow and support patient progress.
Communities and health departments
can help by promoting healthier living spaces, including tobacco-free
areas and safe walking areas. Local communities also can ensure access
to healthy food options, including those with lower sodium.
Important progress has
been made, but more is needed to continue to
save lives, particularly for people under 65
to learn more about Million Hearts, a national initiative that aims to
prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes in the U.S. by 2017 by
focusing on improving clinical care and community prevention strategies.