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"Young women in the United States are becoming less healthy, which is now reversing prior improvements seen in heart disease deaths for the gender," said Dr. Erin Michos, associate professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore. She's the co-author of a new study that investigated causes of premature death for U.S. women.
For the study, her team analyzed U.S. death certificates between 1999 and 2018 found that cancer was the most common cause of early death in women.
But the annual percentage change (APC) in death rates for cancer declined year after year, as it increased for heart disease between 2010 and 2018 in two groups — 25- to 34-year-old women (2.2%) and 55- to 64-year-old (0.5%).
After 2008, heart disease APCs rose significantly among women in the Midwest, medium and small metro areas, as well as rural areas. It also rose among white women between 2009 and 2013 and among Native American women from 2009 to 2018.
"In a previous study in December 2018, we showed that more attention should be paid to the health of young women, particularly those with the risk factors that contribute to heart disease," Michos said. "Our latest research confirms that need still exists."
The findings were recently published in the European Heart Journal – Quality of Care and Clinical Outcomes.
SOURCE: Johns Hopkins Medicine, news release, March 31, 2021
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