Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. Half of the deaths due to heart disease in 2006 were in women.

In 2006, a total of 631,636 people in the United States died of heart disease. Of the deaths that year, 26%—or more than one in every four—were caused by heart disease.

In the United States, someone has a heart attack every 34 seconds. Each minute, someone in the United States dies from a heart disease-related event.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for people of most racial/ethnic groups in the United States, including African Americans, American Indians or Alaska Natives, Hispanics, and whites. For Asian Americans, heart disease is second only to cancer.

In 2010, heart disease will cost the United States $316.4 billion. This total includes the cost of health care services, medications, and lost productivity.

Nine out of 10 heart disease patients have at least one risk factor. Several medical conditions and lifestyle choices can put people at a higher risk for heart disease, including:

  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Cigarette smoking
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Poor diet
  • Physical inactivity
  • Alcohol use
* Information taken from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention