While data on overall heart disease (HD) and coronary HD (CHD) mortality trends are available, less is known about trends for other HD subtypes. Matthew D. Ritchey, DPT, Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion of the CDC, and colleagues assessed the contributions of heart disease subtypes to overall heart disease mortality trends during 2000-2010.
The CDC team analysed mortality data from the CDC WONDER database, which contains death certificate information from every American state and the District of Columbia. Data included deaths that occurred during the years 2000-2010 among US residents 35 years or older with an underlying cause of death coded as CHD, hypertensive HD (HHD), valvular HD, arrhythmia, heart failure, pulmonary HD, or other HD.
Between 2000 and 2010, there were 7,102,778 HD deaths. The researchers also reported these key findings:
- The mortality rates declined annually for total HD (-3.8 percent) and CHD (-5.1 percent).
- Mortality increased annually for HHD (1.3 percent) and arrhythmia (1.0 percent) and declined for most other subtypes.
- While the HHD rate increased among non-Hispanic whites and was unchanged among non-Hispanic blacks, it remained much higher among non-Hispanic blacks in 2010.
- In 2010, excluding CHD and other HD, the leading cause of HD-related death was HHD among adults 35 to 54 years of age (12.1 percent) and those 55 to 74 years of age (6.7 percent); amongst those 75 years or older, it was heart failure (12.2 percent).
The researchers explained that although the proportions of HD deaths attributable to HHD and arrhythmia were relatively small, their mortality rate increases were notable.
“Uncontrolled blood pressure and obesity amongst younger adults, especially non-Hispanic blacks, may be putting them at risk for developing HHD at an early age," the CDC team said. "These increases might be linked to an aging population, the sequelae of persons living longer with heart failure, increases in chronic kidney disease and HHD prevalence, and possible changes in how arrhythmias are diagnosed and reported on death certificates.”
“Despite a continued decrease in overall HD mortality, considerable burden still exists. Public health and clinical communities should continue to develop and rigorously apply evidence-based interventions to prevent and treat CHD as well as other HD subtypes such as HHD and arrhythmia,” the researchers noted.
Dr. Ritchey's colleagues who co-authored the study are Fleetwood Loustalot, PhD, FNP; Barbara A. Bowman, PhD; and Yuling Hong, MD, PhD.
Image Credit: American Heart Association