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Heart Health

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) — including heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure — is the number one killer of men and women in the United States. 

  • Heart disease is a term that includes several more specific heart conditions. 
  • The most common heart disease in the United States is coronary heart disease, which can lead to heart attack.

Know Your Risk!

Risk factors for heart disease and stroke include:

  • High blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels
  • Smoking
  • Inadequate intake of fruits and vegetables
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Physical inactivity

Taken together, these major risk factors account for around 80% of deaths from heart disease and stroke. The only way to know your level of risk is to be assessed by a healthcare professional and to be checked for factors such as your blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels, waist measurement and BMI. Once you know your overall risk, agree with your health care professional on a plan for specific actions you should take to reduce your risk for heart disease and stroke.

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Absolute and Relative Morbidity Burdens Attributable to Various Illnesses and Injuries, Active Component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2016

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6/19/2017
Did you know  … ? In 2016, essential hypertension accounted for 52,586 encounters for health care among 29,612 active component service members in the U.S. Armed Forces. Of all cardiovascular diseases, essential hypertension is by far the most common specific condition diagnosed among active duty service members. Untreated hypertension increases the risks of subsequent ischemic heart disease (heart attack), cerebrovascular disease (stroke), and kidney failure. CHART: Healthcare burdens attributable to cardiovascular diseases, active component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2016 Major condition: •	For all other cardiovascular the number of medical encounters was 70,781, Rank 29, number of individuals affected was 35,794 with a rank of 30. The number of bed days was 4,285 with a rank of 21. •	For essential hypertension the number of medical encounters was 52,586, rank 35, number of individuals affected was 29,612 with a rank of 35. The number of bed days was 151 with a rank of 86. •	For cerebrovascular disease the number of medical encounters was 7,772, rank 79, number of individuals affected was 1,708, with a rank of 96. The number of bed days was 2,107 with a rank of 32. •	For ischemic heart disease the number of medical encounters was 6,629, rank 83, number of individuals affected 2,399 with a rank of 87. The number of bed days was 1,140 with a rank of 42. •	For inflammatory the number of medical encounters was 2,221, rank 106, number of individuals affected 1,302 with a rank of 97. The number of bed days was 297 with a rank of 72. •	For rheumatic heart disease the number of medical encounters was 319, rank 125, number of individuals affected 261, with a rank of 121. The number of bed days was 2 with a rank of 133. Learn more about healthcare burdens attributable to various diseases and injuries by visiting Health.mil/MSMRArchives. #LoveYourHeart Infogaphic graphic features transparent graphic of a man’s heart illuminated within his chest.

This infographic documents healthcare burdens attributable to cardiovascular diseases among active component, U.S. Armed Forces in 2016.

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Heart Disease and Its Effects on Service Members

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Cardiovascular disease comprises disorders of the heart and circulatory system including coronary heart disease and cerebrovascular disease. This infographic provides data on the risk factors for cardiovascular disease among military members base on diagnostic codes in the electronic health records of service members during a 10-year surveillance period.

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