China Bound for Cardiovascular Disease Epidemic

But researchers find that reducing just smoking, blood pressure would prevent CVD events, deaths
By Monica Smith
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, May 5 (HealthDay News) -- The inevitable growth and aging of China's population will increase its rate of cardiovascular disease (CVD) by more than 50 percent in the next 20 years, but reducing or eliminating individual risk trends could help counteract the expected epidemic, according to research published online May 4 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

Andrew Moran, M.D., of the Columbia University Medical Center in New York City, and colleagues used a computer simulation model to project the rate of CVD from 2010 to 2030 in adults ages 35 to 84 in China.

Holding risk factor levels constant, the researchers projected that, based on population growth and aging, annual cardiovascular events would increase more than 50 percent between 2010 and 2030, and that projected trends in total cholesterol, blood pressure, smoking and diabetes would result in an additional 14 percent increase in CVD events in that time. However, they found that a reduction of active smoking in men to a 20 percent rate in 2020 and a 10 percent rate in 2030, or a 3.8 mm Hg reduction in mean systolic blood pressure in men and women, would prevent cardiovascular events and result in 2.9 to 5.7 million fewer total deaths over the time period.

"Population-wide risk reduction strategies, screening for CVD risk factors, and scaling up of successful local risk factor prevention and treatment programs should be included in China's health system reform," the authors write.

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