Heart disease: By the numbers

For more than 70 years, heart disease has been the leading cause of death in the United States.

Heart disease extends beyond the sudden and potentially fatal heart attack.

Many forms of chronic heart disease cause several quality-of-life-limiting symptoms, often progressing so subtly that sufferers can explain away these symptoms as “just getting older.”

Talk to your doctor about your risk for heart disease, potential symptoms and if you need a cardiologist.

The prevalence of heart disease is such that its longevity as the leading cause of death in the United State is unparalleled.


The year in which heart disease became the no. 1 cause of death in the United States, remaining so since.


Heart disease-related deaths in the US last year.

34 seconds

How often a death occurs resulting from heart disease.

1 in 5

Deaths from heart disease in the US.

20.1 million

Adults 20 and older living with coronary artery disease, the most common form of heart disease.


Annual deaths from coronary artery disease.

2 in 10

Coronary artery disease deaths in patients under age 65.


Heart attacks in the US every year.


Patients whose heart attack was their first.

1 in 5

Heart attacks that are “silent,” though resulting in damage.

Symptoms of heart disease

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest discomfort
  • Dizziness/Lightheadedness
  • Fainting/Near-fainting
  • Fatigue
  • Heartburn
  • Swelling in extremities
  • Pain in neck, jaw, upper torso and back
  • Numbness, weakness, coldness in legs or arms

Heart disease risk factors

  • High blood pressure
  • High LDL cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Unhealthy diet
  • Physical inactivity


Primary care at McLaren

Make an appointment with a McLaren primary care physician to discuss your heart health and address your risk for heart disease.

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Cardiology at McLaren

Learn more about the many procedures and techniques making McLaren Health Care a leader in cardiovascular care.

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