Number of stroke deaths worldwide could reach nearly 5 million by 2030

The number of deaths around the world due to ischemic stroke is expected to increase significantly in the years ahead, according to new research published in Neurology.[1] In fact, researchers anticipate the number could jump from the 3.29 million deaths seen in 2019 to 4.9 million deaths in 2030.

The study’s authors evaluated Global Health Data Exchange information to explore stroke mortality around the world from 1990 to 2019. They also used that same data to predict stroke mortality in the future. The authors noted that smoking, kidney dysfunction, a sodium-rich diet, and higher blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, or body mass index (BMI) were all associated with a heightened stroke risk. By focusing on these factors, they explained, it is easier for policymakers and public health officials to guide the development of interventions and preventive strategies that target high-risk populations.

“This increase in the global death toll of ischemic stroke along with a predicted further increase in the future is concerning, but ischemic stroke is highly preventable,” co-author Lize Xiong, MD, of Tongji University in Shanghai, China, said in a prepared statement. “Our results suggest that a combination of lifestyle factors like smoking and a diet high in sodium along with other factors such as high blood pressure and high BMI can lead to an increased risk of stroke.”

Xiong et al. did note that the worldwide stroke rate has actually decreased over time, dropping from 66 per 100,000 people in 1990 to 44 per 100,000 people in 2019. However, the population has increased so much during that time that the total number of deaths is still expected to rise.

Read the full study in Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology, here.

Michael Walter
Michael Walter, Managing Editor

Michael has more than 16 years of experience as a professional writer and editor. He has written at length about cardiology, radiology, artificial intelligence and other key healthcare topics.

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