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Prevalence of Cardiovascular Risk Factors, Diseases Set to Increase

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Annual inflation-adjusted health care costs of cardiovascular risk factors projected to triple between 2020 and 2050

By Elana Gotkine HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, June 6, 2024 (HealthDay News) — The prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors and diseases will increase through 2050, and the associated economic burden is also projected to increase substantially, according to two studies published online June 4 in Circulation.

Karen E. Joynt Maddox, M.D., M.P.H., from the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, and colleagues estimated trends in the prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors and clinical cardiovascular disease and stroke and projected forecasted prevalence through 2050. The researchers estimated that from 2020 to 2050, there will be increases in the prevalence of hypertension (51.2 to 61.0 percent), diabetes (16.3 to 26.8 percent), and obesity (43.1 to 60.6 percent), while the prevalence of hypercholesterolemia will decrease (45.8 to 24.0 percent). Increases are projected for coronary disease (7.8 to 9.2 percent), heart failure (2.7 to 3.8 percent), stroke (3.9 to 6.4 percent), atrial fibrillation (1.7 to 2.4 percent), and total cardiovascular disease (11.3 to 15.0 percent).

Dhruv S. Kazi, M.D., from the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, and colleagues projected health care costs attributable to key cardiovascular risk factors and conditions through 2050. The researchers found that in 2020, one in three U.S. adults received care for a cardiovascular risk factor or condition. Between 2020 and 2050, the annual inflation-adjusted health care costs of cardiovascular risk factors are projected to triple, from $400 to $1,344 billion. Annual health care costs are projected to almost quadruple for cardiovascular conditions (from $393 to $1,490 billion), and a 54 percent increase is projected for productivity losses (from $234 to $361 billion).

“It is not surprising that an enormous increase in cardiovascular risk factors and diseases will produce a substantial economic burden — to the tune of a $1.8 trillion price tag for cardiovascular disease projected by 2050,” Kazi said in a statement.

Ties to the pharmaceutical industry were disclosed by two authors and one reviewer from the Joynt Maddox study and one author and one reviewer from the Kazi study.

Abstract/Full Text – Joynt Maddox (subscription or payment may be required)

Abstract/Full Text – Kazi (subscription or payment may be required)

Editorial 1 (subscription or payment may be required)

Editorial 2 (subscription or payment may be required)

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