Cardiovascular Diseases




Historyof Cardiovascular Disease

Aheart is one of the most vital organs in the human body as it pumpsblood that carries oxygen to other parts. However,there are various diseases that can interfere with the normalfunctioning of the heart, majority of which are fatal. Cardiovasculardiseases include a number of heart conditions that affect the normalfunctioning of the heart. Cardiovascular diseases are one the leadingcauses of death in both women and men in the U.S and also around theworld. According to the World Health Organization (W.H.O),cardiovascular diseases claimed over 17.5 million lives in 2012. Thisrepresented 31% of all annual deaths recorded. Coronary arterydisease that is the leading cause of cardiovascular disease was anotable cause of death 7.4 million individuals while stroke claimed6.7 million lives. The report suggests that, there have an increasingnumber of cardiovascular diseases in the world, as over 75% of theincidences originated from the developing countries and most of thevictims were below the age of 70 years (WorldHealth Organization, 2015).In this research paper, the author will address the subject ofcardiovascular diseases on the health and social-economicdeterminants of the disease. The author will delve on past andpresent initiatives that have been carried out to address thesituation. The outcomes developed and progress made as well as thecurrent status of cardiovascular diseases.


Determinantsof health

Cardiovasculardiseases refer to a wide range of illness which affects the heart. Inthe U.S, coronary artery diseases or the hardening of the arteriesthat carry blood from the heart is the leading cause of death inAmerica. The diseases can cause heart failure or a heart attack andother complications. The determinants of health as far as heartconditions are well documented, and a number of health factors canincrease the chance of acquiring heart conditions. Health factors canbe broken down into three factors: conditions, behavior and heredity.A condition refers to health factors such as chronic disease thatmight increase the chances of acquiring cardiovascular diseases. Oneof the conditions that could lead to heart diseases is highcholesterol levels. People with high cholesterol levels are likely toincrease their chances of contracting heart disease due to depositsof cholesterol on blood arteries which can either reduce the supplyof blood and oxygen to parts of the body. People with diabetes havean increased chance of developing heart diseases. Behavioral factorsare believed to contribute the most number of cases when it comes todeveloping cardiovascular diseases. For instance, the smoking and theuse of alcohol causes atherosclerosis and high cholesterol levelswhich increase the chances of developing heart diseases. Finally,genetics plays a role in heart diseases, and family backgrounddetermines the likelihood of developing heart diseases. Someindividuals who have a family history of health conditions such asdiabetes and high blood pressure have increased chances of developingcardiovascular diseases.

Socialeconomic status

Whilehealth determinants of cardiovascular disease are well documented,social economic status also contribute in cardiovascular diseases. Itis often assumed that cardiovascular diseases affect the wealthy inthe community, but this is far from the truth. Cardiovasculardiseases develop in both the wealthy and the poor in the society.However, the cause of the development might be slightly different.Among the wealthy, behavioral factors such as the consumption ofalcohol and the use of cigarettes are the leading causes of heartdiseases. However, in low-income families heart conditions might becaused by either stress and work related problems (Lang,Lapage, Scheiber, &amp Kelly-Irving).Most low-income individuals suffer from myocardial infractions andcases of drug abuse have also been attributed to the development ofheart diseases.

Pastand Present Initiatives

Overthe recent years, there have been initiatives by the government incurbing cardiovascular diseases. Just a few years ago, the governmentintroduced a new food system in school cafeteria upon the discoverythat most children at school were not getting balanced diets and,therefore, there were increased chances of children becoming obese ata young age. This could translate to more chances of developing heartdiseases in the future. In fact, the first lady, Michelle Obama wasvery vocal about the issue as children in schools now have access tobalanced diet meals at school.The American Medical Association made an initiative in 2013 which wasreferred to as improving health outcomes initiative (IHO). Theinitiative will bring the medical professionals as well as thepatients together with the aim of averting type 2 diabetes as well ascardiovascular diseases. Theinitiative will involve a multi-million dollar program that will runfor a number of years in the country(American Medical Association, 2013).

Outcomesdeveloped and utilized to measure progress

Cardiovasculardisease remains a huge challenge not just in the U.S but in theworld. Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of morbidity andseveral outcomes have been developed in an effort to change theprogression of the disease. Population assessment influences policydecisions in developing and developing countries. Regional CoreHealth Data Initiative collects information on cardiovascular diseaseand indicators related to the disease such as obesity and smokingprevalence (Fuster,2010).

Currentstatus of heart disease

Thecurrent status of cardiovascular diseases is not encouraging.According to World health report, cardiovascular diseases claimed17.5 million lives in 2012 and it is estimated that by 2030 23.3million deaths will be related to cardiovascular diseases. This isespecially after the number of cardiovascular diseases in the countryseems to be on the rise. Though school kids can now have access tohealthier foods in their cafeteria. The results from the outcome showthat significant changes can be experienced by changing people’sbehavior such as eating healthy foods, engaging in physical exercisesand regulating the use of alcohol and tobacco(World Health Organization, 2015).


AmericanMedical Association. (2013, April 22). AMAUnveils First Phase of Improving Health Outcomes Initiative:Preventing Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes.Retrieved April 15, 2015, from American Medical Association:

Fuster,K. V. (2010). PromotingCardiovascular Health in the Developing World: A Critical Challengeto Achieve Global Health.New Jersey: National Academies Press.

Lang,T., Lapage, B., Scheiber, A., &amp Kelly-Irving, M. (n.d.). SocialDeterminants of .PublicHealth Reviews,Vol. 33, No 2, 601-622,d.cGU

WorldHealth Organization. (2015, January). CardiovascularDiseases.Retrieved April 15, 2015, from World Health Organization:

WorldHealth Organization. (2015). Cardiovasculardisease.Retrieved April 17, 2015, from World Health Organization: