Heart Attack Statistics

Heart attacks are a common form of ischemic heart disease. The World Health Organization estimated in 2002 that more than twelve percent of all deaths worldwide were due to ischemic heart disease. In developed countries, it is the leading cause of death. In developing countries, however, it ranks third behind AIDS and lower respiratory tract infections.

A heart attack, known by its medical name of acute myocardial infarction, is a disease state that involves the interruption of the blood supply to part of the heart. The result is a shortage of oxygen that can damage heart tissue and potentially cause death. Heart attacks are the leading cause of death worldwide. Major risk factors for heart attack include a history of angina or vascular disease, a previous stroke or heart attack, older age, excessive alcohol use, illegal drug abuse, smoking, episodes of abnormal heartbeats, obesity, high stress levels , high or low cholesterol, high triglyceride levels, high blood pressure and diabetes.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States; it is even more common than cancer. It is estimated that one fifth of all deaths in the United States are due to coronary heart disease. More than thirteen million people across the country suffer from coronary heart disease. Each year, more than a million people suffer heart attacks; four out of ten individuals die from their attacks.

Symptoms of heart attacks include anxiety, a feeling of impending doom, chest pain, sweating, shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, nausea, and vomiting. Often, heart attack patients feel sick very suddenly. The symptoms of heart attacks in men are often different from the symptoms in women. Women most often experience fatigue, shortness of breath and a feeling of weakness. About a third of all heart attacks are silent and do not involve any associated chest pain or symptoms.

Below are some recent statistics on heart attacks in the United States.

452,327: The number of deaths from heart attacks in the United States in the year 2004.

20: The percentage of all deaths from heart attacks in the United States in the year 2004.

1.2 million: the average number of heart attacks that occur each year.

38: the percentage of all who die of a coronary heart attack.

15.8 million: the number of heart attack patients who survive.

8.9 million: The estimated number of angina patients in the United States.

400,000: The number of new cases of angina each year in the United States.

233,000: The number of women who die from cardiovascular disease each year.

14 million: The number of Americans affected by some form of heart disease or angina.

50: The percentage of deaths that occur within an hour after a heart attack when left untreated.

60 billion: The number of dollars spent on the treatment and prevention of heart attacks each year.

20: Every 20 seconds, a new heart attack occurs somewhere in America.

60: every minute, there is another death by heart attack.

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