Cardiovascular Disease (CVD)

Why is cardiovascular disease important?


Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a group of medical problems that affect the heart and surrounding blood vessels. It can take many forms, such as high blood pressure, coronary artery disease, valvular heart disease, stroke, or rheumatic heart disease.


Diseases of the heart and circulatory system are the largest single cause of death in the European Union, accounting for about 2 million deaths each year, as well as being responsible for the largest number of premature deaths before the age of 75 years.


Cardiovascular disease is currently responsible for more than 170 billion annually in economic costs in the increasingly resource-constrained countries of the EU. Despite recent reductions in the number of premature deaths by CVD in many European countries, the future burden of CVD is expected to increase as a result of the ageing population and rising prevalence of obesity and diabetes.


Establishing the optimal method for identifying those at highest risk of disease is a key part of achieving personalised preventative action that meets the diverse needs of countries across the European Union.