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About Cardiovascular Disease in Europe

2012 Statistics



  • Lifestyle interventions and risk factor modification reduce cardiovascular morbidity and mortality (2)
  • There is considerable variation between European countries in patient lifestyles, especially for smoking (30% in Hungary, 15% in Italy), and in the use of prophylactic drug therapies (2)
  • Coronary surgery patients who stop smoking are more likely to survive (2)



  • Each year cardiovascular disease (CVD) causes over 4 million deaths in Europe and over 1.9 million deaths in the European Union (1)
  • CVD causes 47% of all deaths in Europe and 40 % in the EU  (1)
  • CVD is the main cause of death in women in all countries of Europe and is the main cause of death in men in all but six countries (1)
  • CHD by itself is the single most common cause of death before the age of 65 in Europe 
  • 20% of the coronary patients had previously diagnosed diabetes (2)
  • Overall CVD is estimated to cost the European Union economy 196€ billion a year (1)
  • Of the total cost of CVD in the EU, around 54% is due to health care costs, 24% due to productivity losses and 22% due to informal care of people with CVD (1)
  • Death rates from CHD are generally higher in Central and Eastern Europe than in Northern, Southern and Western Europe (1)
  • Death rates from stroke are many times higher in Central and Eastern Europe than in Northern, Southern and Western Europe (1)
  • CVD mortality is now falling in most European countries, including Central and Eastern European countries, which saw large increases until the beginning of the 21st century (1)
  • Smoking remains a major public health issue in Europe. Although smoking has declined in many European countries, the rate for decline is slow and rates remain stable or are increasing in some countries, particularly among women (1)
  • Women are now smoking nearly as much as men in many European countries and girls often smoke more than boys (1)
  • Fruit and vegetable consumption has increased overall across Europe in recent decades, while overall fat consumption has remained stable (1)
  • Few adults in European countries participate in adequate levels of physical activity, with inactivity more common among women than men (1)
  • Levels of obesity are high across Europe in both adults and children, although rates vary substantially between countries (1)
  • The prevalence of diabetes in Europe is high and has increased rapidly over the last ten years, growing by more than 50% in many countries (1)