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Non-Communicable Diseases are the leading killer in India

"It is very high time to kill the no. 1 killer for a healthy life."

As per Wikipedia "A non-communicable disease (NCD) is a medical condition or disease that is not caused by infectious agents (non-infectious or non-transmissible). NCDs can refer to chronic diseases which last for long periods of time and progress slowly." They include heart diseases, stroke, cancer, diabetes, hypertension etc.

Various reports attributed to the fact that NCDs are the leading cause of deaths in India.

NCD Death Causes in India

Here are the excerpts from various reports:

1. As per the results published in seven papers on the Global Burden of Diseases published in The Lancet on October 6, 2016:

In 2015, India, like other developed countries, had more number of deaths caused by non-communicable diseases(NCDs). In the case of males, deaths due to non-communicable diseases (3.6 million) were more than double that were caused by communicable diseases (1.5 million), while it was nearly double in females (2.7 million due to non-communicable diseases and nearly 1.4 million deaths due to communicable diseases). Cardiovascular diseases were the leading cause of death in both sexes in India — 1.6 million in males and 1.1 million in females. The next biggest cause of deaths was chronic respiratory diseases — 0.68 million in males and 0.5 million in females.

2. An Indian today has over twice the odds of dying of a non-communicable disease than a communicable disease, according to the World Health Organization.

3. According to a recent study by the Registrar General of India ( RGI) and the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), about 25 percent of deaths in the age group of 25- 69 years occur because of heart diseases.

If all age groups are included, heart diseases account for about 19 percent of all deaths.

It is the leading cause of death among males as well as females and in all regions of India, the study found.

4. As per the findings by the Confederation of Indian Industry and academia, with increasing prevalence of life-style diseases in India, "Every year, roughly 5.8 million Indians die from heart and lung diseases, stroke, cancer and diabetes. In other words, 1 in 4 Indians risks dying from an NCD before they reach the age of 70".

5. A quarter of all mortality is attributable to cardiovascular disease(CVD). Ischemic heart disease and stroke are the predominant causes and are responsible for >80% of CVD deaths. The Global Burden of Disease study estimate of age-standardized CVD death rate of 272 per 100 000 population in India is higher than the global average of 235 per 100 000 population.

Despite wide heterogeneity in the prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors across different regions, CVD has emerged as the leading cause of death in all parts of India, including poorer states and rural areas.

6. In India, out of the estimated population of more than 1.27 billion dispersed across various geographical regions, about 45 million people suffer from coronary artery disease. ‘According to current estimates, India will soon have the highest number of cases of cardiovascular disease in the world,’ says Dr Nikhil Kumar, Director, Cardiology, Fortis Memorial Research Institute, Gurgaon. It is estimated to account for 35.9% deaths by the year 2030.

7. Diabetes and hypertension have increased heart disease cases: ‘The population of diabetics in India is about 50.8 million, which according to the International Diabetes Federation is by far the highest number reported among all parts of the world. The prevalence is higher in urban areas (6-8%) compared to rural areas (2-3%). Indians fall prey to diabetes at a relatively young age (about 45 years), which increases their lifetime risk of heart disease.

Apart from diabetes, high blood pressure is also responsible for increased number heart disease cases. The increase in hypertension prevalence has been steady over the last 50 years, more in urban than in rural areas. Hypertension is 25-30% in urban and 10-15% in rural subjects.


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