A bit of good news—coronary death rate seems to have peaked Coronary death rates seem to be declining among middle-aged Americans, particularly white men.
Increasing evidence suggests the country may have passed a peak of premature deaths from this cause. Until recently, the trend was the other way: coronary deaths had been rising steadily since before World War II.
"The downtrend is real, not a statistical fluke," concluded Chicago cardiologist Jeremiah Stamler, MD, chief of preventive medicine at Northwestern University School of Medicine, who discussed the figures at the recent American Heart Association seminar for science writers at Marco Island, Fla.
The latest data from the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) cover the five years ending in 1972 and indicate a decline in coronary death rates averaging 8.7% for white men aged 35 to 64 years (11.4% for those 35 to 44 and 7.3% for those 45 to 54).