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Heart disease

Heart Disease Overview 

  • Heart disease claims the life of 1 Australian every 26 minutes; approximately 20,000 lives per year   
  • Cardiovascular disease kills 45,000 Australians every year; approximately 1 every 12 minutes 
  • Cardiovascular disease affects one in five Australians, or 3.72 million people
  • Cardiovascular disease costs Australia around $7.6 billion in healthcare spending every year

Heart disease refers to a range of conditions that affect your heart. There are many types of heart disease, including coronary artery disease (heart attacks, heart muscle disease), heart rhythm problems (arrhythmias), as well as congenital heart defects which are present at birth. Heart conditions that manifest later in life may be inherited or acquired. However in all cases, a combination of both genetic and environmental factors contribute to heart disease. The words "heart disease" are often used interchangeably with the term "cardiovascular disease". Cardiovascular disease includes heart as well as circulatory conditions, such as stroke. Keep in mind, all heart diseases are cardiovascular diseases, but not all cardiovascular diseases are heart disease.

Below is a summary of the most common heart diseases; their symptoms, causes, diagnosis, treatment, latest research and possible ways to prevent the disease.  

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