Cardiovascular disease as we know it today is an umbrella term. It can refer to a number of heart conditions, including heart and blood vessel disease, heart attack, stroke, heart failure, and arrhythmia. Each condition presents itself differently. Some, such as heart disease, lead to a heart attack or stroke. Because cardiovascular disease encompasses numerous conditions, the average person may know little about the entire ordeal. We all know our heart must be strong and healthy. Through diet and exercise, this is possible. But there are other factors at play for cardiovascular disease in the United States.
Facts About Cardiovascular Disease
- Every year, around 600,000 people die from heart disease – that is one in every four deaths in the country.
- Heart disease remains the number one cause of death in both men and women here in the United States. Over half of all deaths due to heart disease are men.
- Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the leading type of heart disease, killing more than 370,000 people per year.
- Each year, 735,000 Americans suffer a heart attack. Of these, just over 500,000 experience their first heart attack while over 200,000 experience their second or third heart attack.
Early Action Against Heart Disease
It is crucial to know the early warning signs and symptoms of a heart attack. Whether we’re talking about symptoms you experience personally or in someone you know, the chances of survival are greater when treatment begins immediately.
- In recent years, around 92% of people recognized chest pain as a symptom of an impending heart attack. However, only 27% knew to call 911 when someone was having a heart attack with major symptoms present.
- Nearly 47% of cardiac deaths occur outside of a hospital. As such, it’s clear to see most people do not act on their early warning signs of a heart attack.
The most significant signs and symptoms of a heart attack include:
- Chest pain and discomfort.
- Upper body pain or discomfort in the arms, neck, jaw, and upper stomach.
- Shortness of breath.
- Nausea, cold sweats, and lightheadedness.
Risks of Heart Disease
There are numerous risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease amongst Americans. These risk factors include, along with medical conditions and lifestyle choices, a number of conditions:
- Overweight and obesity
- Poor diet
- Lack of exercise
- Excessive alcohol use