Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Risk factors for heart disease rising in younger, poorer Canadians: study

Despite a decline in rates for heart disease and stroke among Canada's population overall, cardiovascular disease is actually on the rise in two segments of society - people under age 50 and those of lower socioeconomic status, researchers have found. "Our results indicate that young people are increasingly bearing the burden of cardiovascular risk factors," said Dr. Douglas Lee, a scientist at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES). "This is an important group because they are the ones who will predict future heart disease." "And earlier onset of cardiovascular disease means potentially longer and more intense treatment over their lifetime," said Lee, a cardiologist at Toronto's University Health Network who led a 1994-2005 study of national trends in heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and smoking prevalence. The study, published in this week's Canadian Medical Association Journal, looked at a sample of Canadians aged 12 and up from all socioeconomic and ethnic groups. It found the prevalence of heart disease and diabetes is rising fastest among Canadians of lower socioeconomic status

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