Cardiovascular mortality rates have decline'd significantly in most industrialized countries over the past three decades.2 Nevertheless, cardiovascular disease remains one of the most important causes of morbidity and mortality in Western society, especially as the average age of the population increases.'" Heart failure is rapidly becoming one of the most prevalent cardiovascular disorders and the incidence of heart failure is expected to continue to increase for some time to come.5,6 Unfortunately, it appears that the declining fatality rate of acute coronary events/ resulting in a larger group of persons at increased risk of developing chronic cardiovascular disease, contributes to the rise of heart failure. The paradox of better care is expanded by the observation that treatment of hypertension may actually postpone rather than prevent the onset of heart failure. 8 The prognosis of heart failure is poor9 and the economic impact of heart failure on health services is considerable because of the long-tenn pharmacological treatment and frequent hospitalizations associated with the syndrome. This burden is set to increase further as the prognosis of patients with heart failure is improved by medical and surgical interventions10- 13 and the proportion of the elderly increases in Western society.

, , ,
Netherlands Heart Foundation, Stichting Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek Hart- en Vaatziekten (Amersfoort, the Netherlands)
D.E. Grobbee (Diederick)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Mosterd, A. (1997, March 26). Epidemiology of Heart Failure. Retrieved from