Tuesday, June 24, 2008

What Are the Main Causes of Death Over the Next 20 Years?

Last month (May 2008), a study by World Health Organization (WHO) revealed that the number of deaths from road accidents, cancer and heart disease would increase tremendously over the next 20 years. As indicated in its "World Health Statistics 2008", developing world’s populations get richer and live longer are reasons behind such soar.

According to WHO, the growth of low and middle-income economies will raise mortality rates from non-communicable diseases such as cardiovascular disease and cancer, and road crashes due to increased car ownership; it will make up more than 30 percent of deaths worldwide by 2030.

On the other hand, deaths from factors currently associated with the developing world, such as nutritional deficiencies, malaria and tuberculosis, will fall.

Globally, deaths from cancer will increase from 7.4 million in 2004 to 11.8 million in 2030, and deaths from cardiovascular diseases will rise from 17.1 million to 23.4 million in the same period.

Deaths due to road traffic accidents will increase from 1.3 million in 2004 to 2.4 million in 2030, mainly owing to more motor vehicle ownership and use associated with economic growth in the low- and middle-income countries.

By 2030, WHO predicted that ischemic heart disease, strokes, chronic obstructive heart disease (COHD), and lower respiratory infections such as pneumonia, would be the 4 main causes of death. The rise in COHD is mainly because of the increased tobacco consumption.

In 2004, tobacco-related illnesses caused some 5.4 million deaths. The figure will increase to 8.3 million by 2030, with 80 percent of these cases in developing countries. On average, every tobacco user loses 15 years of life, and rate of smoking is particularly high in Eastern and Central Europe and Southeast Asia.

These 10 countries, namely Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, Russia, Turkey, and United States, contain nearly two thirds of the world’s smokers.

The report also indicated that not more than 5 percent of the world’s population is fully covered by anti-smoking measures like advertising restrictions, health warnings and higher taxation, which do have an impact.

Also pointed out in the report, the increase in deaths from non-communicable diseases would, however, be accompanied by large declines in mortality for the main communicable, maternal, perinatal and nutritional causes, including HIV infection, tuberculosis and malaria.

Nevertheless, deaths worldwide from HIV/AIDS are expected to rise from 2.2 million in 2008 to a maximum of 2.4 million in 2012 before declining to 1.2 million in 2030.

1 comment:

  1. Nice to read your post and your advice about Heart Disease Prevention tips
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