German heart report: Heart diseases increase - but the death rates decrease

German heart report: Heart diseases increase - but the death rates decrease

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New report on Germany's number one cause of death

The German Heart Report documents current trends and phrases related to heart diseases. Cardiovascular diseases remain the number one cause of death in Germany. Over 37 percent of all deaths in this country are due to cardiovascular diseases. According to the report, fewer people are dying from heart disease now than a few years ago, but the number of diseases is increasing steadily.

The German Society for Cardiology - Cardiovascular Research (DGK) recently presented the current German Heart Report. According to the DGK, heart diseases such as heart failure, heart valve disorders and cardiac arrhythmia have increased in recent years. In contrast, improved treatment options led to a decrease in the death rate. A turnaround is not expected due to the aging population in the next few years.

Heart disease overview

According to the report, heart valve disease in particular has increased. An increase of 5.8 percent was recorded here. The number of cardiac arrhythmias rose by three percent and cardiac insufficiency by 3.7 percent. "These are also the diseases that become more common with increasing age," explains DGK President Professor Dr. Hugo A. Katus in a press release on the new heart report.

Better therapies lead to more chronic diseases

“The increasing life expectancy, which is largely due to the improved treatment options for heart patients, also means that more and more patients with chronic heart disease have to be treated,” explains the heart specialist. The professor gives heart valve diseases as an example. The heart valves are stressed throughout life, with increasing deposits and calcifications. The longer a person lives, the more the function of the valve is impaired. In the end, only the heart valve replacement helps, says Katus.

Great success in heart failure treatment

Despite rising cases of illness, the DGK specialists have had great success in treating heart failure. According to the heart report, the death rate of heart failure patients was reduced by around 11 percent. "On the one hand, we have made significant progress in the treatment options in both the medicinal, interventional and technological areas," reports Professor Katus. On the other hand, the awareness in the medical profession has improved to provide suitable and modern therapy options, such as the so-called "Heart Failure Units".

Fewer heart attacks - but constant death rate

As the DGK reports, the total of events that can be attributed to circulatory disorders in the heart, including the heart attack, has decreased by 2.2 percent. The likelihood of dying from a heart attack has remained unchanged in recent years. "We therefore have to develop new alternative therapeutic approaches in order to be able to lower the death rate in the heart attack even further," emphasizes the expert.

More heart diseases in the new federal states

The report also shows that the number of heart diseases in the federal states of Saxony-Anhalt, Saxony, Thuringia, Brandenburg and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania is relatively higher. This is due to the fact that the proportion of people over 65 in these federal states is above average. (vb)

Author and source information

Video: COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic vs heart disease - put death rates in context 9 (July 2022).


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