Coronary Heart Disease: Incidence And Prevalence

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In this essay, I will analyse the changing trends concerning the incidence and prevalence of Coronary Heart Disease (CHD). Also, how the changes that were seen may be influenced by societal factors such as individual diet and lifestyle choices.

Coronary Heart Disease, otherwise known as Ischaemic Heart Disease, is where there is a restriction of oxygenated blood flow to the heart. Coronary arteries by a process known as Atherosclerosis

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become narrowed as a result of fatty materials building upon the walls of the artery (BHF, 2019). It is often linked to an unhealthy diet due to the excess of fatty substances in the body (NHS,2020). Once the fat becomes hard the substance is referred to as atheromatous plaque. If a piece of atheroma breaks from the wall of the artery, it could cause a blood clot to form, which may result in a blockage of blood supply to the heart muscle. Fatally resulting in a heart attack or a stroke (BHF,2019).

In 2015, CVD was the second main cause of death in the UK (Townsend N, Bhatnagar P, Wilkins E, 2015). Since the fatality of the disease has seen a reduction however CVD is still highly prevalent in the UK today. The GBD, global burden of disease study, has found that the burden of CVD is declining in the UK (Newton JN, Briggs ADM, Murray CJL, 2013). Prevalence, the probability of having the disease, in the UK has remained steady at around 3%, furthermore stroke pervasiveness has declined. The prevalence of CHD is higher in men than it is in women, and climbing men women aged over 75 and men over 65. Generally, Men score higher on stress-related psychosocial coronary risk factors. Comparisons between the sexes also reveal gender differences in psychosocial and behavioural coronary risk factors, including excessive alcohol consumption and smoking, favouring women (G.Weidner, 2000).

Similarly, The incidence of myocardial infarction has decreased in all regions of England; the North West still has the highest incidence rate. Looking at the incidence rate per 1000,000 in the UK, from 2002 until 2010. The incidence in men of all ages dropped from 230 to 154. Likewise, women from 95 to 66 (BHF Coronary Heart Disease Statistics, 2012).

Societal factors have a huge impact on the incidence and prevalence of CVD. There is a higher prevalence of CVD among those who have a higher abundance of conventional risk factors such as smoking, diabetes, and obesity. The use of tobacco has resulted in over 140,000 CVD related deaths (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2010). Smoking alone doubles the risk of CHD, tobacco increases the levels of lipids within the arteries. The lack of a healthy balanced diet increases the probability of CHD development. This is because of an unhealthy diet and lack of physical activity, which results in increased consumption of saturated fats which increases blood cholesterol levels (NHS,2020).

In conclusion, Coronary Heart Disease is a deadly disease that is becoming less fatal over time reducing its prevalence. Living a healthy lifestyle with reduced conventional CVD risk factors will reduce the incidence of CVD in the population.


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