A Center for Disease Control and Prevention Report has detailed the leading causes of death in the United States. Stroke has dropped from it’s fourth place ranking to fifth switching positions with unintentional injuries which killed 1, 579 more people than stroke in 2013.
“The fact that the death rate is declining from this terrible and devastating disease is gratifying news,” said American Heart Association president Elliott Antman, M.D. “These statistics are a tribute to the many courageous survivors, healthcare professionals, researchers, volunteers and everyone else committed to fighting stroke.
“Still, far too many people are still dying from stroke, and too many people are suffering greatly from this disease,” said Antman, a professor of medicine and Associate Dean for Clinical/Translational Research at Harvard Medical School and a senior physician in the Cardiovascular Division of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.
Although the stroke death rate has dropped the percentage remains at 36.2 percent for the 2013 year and it maintains its status as the leading cause of disability. Heart disease remains as the number one cause of death in the United States, followed by cancer and chronic lower respiratory disease.
The past president of the American Heart Association and Chairman of neurology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Ralph Sacco, M.D., has attributed the decline in stroke deaths to improvements in treatment and prevention.
“There are more stroke centers now operating in the U.S., and the acute care of stroke is improving,” said Sacco, who in 2010 became the first neurologist to be named American Heart Association president. “However, although mortality from stroke is dropping, we know that the number of people having strokes in the U.S. is rising each year due to the aging of our population and other signs that strokes have increased in younger groups.”