Heart disease, more professionally called cardiovascular disease, is a very common condition worldwide affecting more people every year. Heart disease is linked to genetic factors and lifestyle. Cardiovascular diseases can be classified into blood pressure problems, vascular problems, heart valve problems, heart muscle problems and heart electricity disturbance (arrhythmia). Heart diseases are either acquired or congenital. Congenital conditions affect embryos pre-birth and continue after delivery. Their causes are mainly genetic, but may include adverse effects of medications or radiations the embryo is exposed to during pregnancy. Acquired heart diseases are the more common type and they are mainly the result of bad habits and unhealthy lifestyle. While congenital heart conditions are unavoidable at many cases, acquired conditions can easily be avoided.
Heart disease is the leading cause for death in the world causing 63% of all deaths according to the WHO statistics, and affecting 6% of American adults. The high obesity rate and the unhealthy lifestyle contribute greatly to this high occurrence rate in the USA specially, making heart disease with a higher mortality rate than cancer in the USA. While this mortality rate decreases every year in developed countries, it increases in developing countries. Millions of people die from cardiovascular problems each year. The problem is more serious in developing countries due to poor medical care systems leading to late detection of disease for lack of screening, and poor medical compliance to the treatment for economic and educational reasons. The mortality rate is higher in women, causing more deaths than breast cancer worldwide.