The American Heart Association's journal Circulation has published online a new CDC study entitled "Mortality Resulting From Congenital Heart Disease Among Children and Adults in the United States, 1999-2006." Click here for the abstract. For this study, researchers looked at data from death certificates for residents of the United States for the period 1999-2006. Researchers looked at trends in death due to congenital heart defects by age at death, race and ethnicity, and sex.
Here are some important findings from the study:
- During the period 1999-2006, there were 41,494 deaths related to congenital heart defects in the United States. This means that, for those deaths, congenital heart defects might not have been the main cause of death, but they did contribute to death in some way.
- During the period 1999-2006, congenital heart defects were listed as the main cause of death for 27,960 deaths.
- Nearly half (48%) of the deaths due to congenital heart defects occurred during infancy (younger than 1 year of age).
- Non-Hispanic Blacks were more likely to die from congenital heart defects than were non-Hispanic Whites.
- Males were more likely to die from congenital heart defects than females.
- During this time period, deaths due to congenital heart defects declined among children and adults, but differences between racial and ethnic groups persisted.
- The median age at death for all congenital heart defects was 1 year of age.