The Top 5 Leading Causes of Death for Females 45 to 59
Cause of Death
Ischaemic Heart Disease
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Heart disease and stroke are already leading causes of death in women in developed countries and will be the leading cause of death in women in poor countries by 2020. The female death rate from heart disease is almost eighteen times higher than from breast cancer and six times more than HIV/AIDS related deaths. In developing countries, half of all deaths of women over 50 are due to heart disease and stroke.
Cerebrovascular disease (CVD) is damage to the blood vessels in the brain, resulting in a stroke. Blood vessels can become blocked because of fat deposits, or a wandering blood clot, which can block the flow of blood to a part of the brain. Sometimes, the blood vessels may leak, break, or burst, resulting in a hemorrhagic stroke. CVD is the most disabling of all neurological diseases. Approximately 50% of survivors have a residual neurological deficit and greater than 25% require chronic care. An estimated 17 million people die of CVDs, particularly heart attacks and strokes, every year. A substantial number of these deaths can be attributed to tobacco smoking, which increases the risk of dying from coronary heart disease and cerebrovascular disease 2 to 3 fold. People with diabetes are also at higher risk of cerebrovascular disease.
More than 1.1 million women worldwide are newly diagnosed with breast cancer annually which represents about 10% of all new cancer cases and 23% of all female cancers. Incidence rates of breast cancer are climbing by as much as 5% annually in low-resource countries. The older a woman is, the greater her chances of developing breast cancer. Approximately 77% of breast cancer cases occur in women over 50 years of age.
Over 900 million women, mainly between the ages of 15 and 44, are infected with TB world-wide. Tuberculosis affects women mainly in their economically and reproductively active years, thus the impact of the disease is also strongly felt by their children and families. About a third of the world's population, or around 2 billion people, carry the TB bacteria but most never develop the active disease. Around 10% of people infected with TB actually develop the disease in their lifetimes, but this proportion is changing as HIV severely weakens the human immune system and makes people much more vulnerable.
By the end of 2005, women accounted for nearly half of all people living with AIDS worldwide, and represent almost 60% of infections in sub-Saharan Africa. New studies underscore the disproportionate impact of the AIDS epidemic on women, especially in sub-Saharan Africa where, on average, three women are HIV-infected for every two men, however among young people (15 to 24 years), the ratio widens considerably to three young women for every young man.
Sources: WHO report: Injury, a leading cause of the global burden of disease 2000.
List Notes: All Statistics are reported deaths for the year 2000. This WHO study combines mortality and health data from national vital registration systems with information obtained from surveys, censuses,epidemiological studies and health service data.