HealthDay News — Cancer death rates declined for adults aged 45 to 64 years from 1999 to 2017, while heart disease death rates decreased to 2011 and then increased, according to the May 22 National Vital Statistics Reports, a publication from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Sally C. Curtin, from the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland, and colleagues present cancer and heart disease death rates among adults aged 45 to 64 years for 1999 to 2017.

Curtin reported a 19 percent decrease in cancer death rates for adults aged 45 to 64 years from 1999 to 2017 (224.9 to 182.6 deaths per 100,000), while heart disease death rates decreased by 22 percent from 1999 to 2011 and then increased 4 percent to 2017 (164.3 to 127.9 and 133.6 deaths per 100,000). The trend patterns were the same for men and women. From 1999 to 2017, the cancer death rate was always higher than the heart disease death rate; in 2017, it was 37 percent higher. Cancer death rates declined from 1999 to 2017 among non-Hispanic white and non-Hispanic black men and women; heart disease death rates declined and then increased since 2009 for non-Hispanic white men and women and since 2011 for non-Hispanic black men and women.

“Disparate trends in cancer and heart disease death rates occurred despite the fact that these two causes of death share many common risk factors,” Curtin writes.

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