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Eur Heart J. 2004 Sep;25(18):1614-9.

Quantifying the heart failure epidemic: prevalence, incidence rate, lifetime risk and prognosis of heart failure The Rotterdam Study.

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Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Erasmus Medical Centre, PO Box 1738, 3000, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.



To determine the prevalence, incidence rate, lifetime risk and prognosis of heart failure.


The Rotterdam Study is a prospective population-based cohort study in 7983 participants aged > or =55. Heart failure was defined according to criteria of the European Society of Cardiology. Prevalence was higher in men and increased with age from 0.9% in subjects aged 55-64 to 17.4% in those aged > or =85. Incidence rate of heart failure was 14.4/1000 person-years (95% CI 13.4-15.5) and was higher in men (17.6/1000 man-years, 95% CI 15.8-19.5) than in women (12.5/1000 woman-years, 95% CI 11.3-13.8). Incidence rate increased with age from 1.4/1000 person-years in those aged 55-59 to 47.4/1000 person-years in those aged > or =90. Lifetime risk was 33% for men and 29% for women at the age of 55. Survival after incident heart failure was 86% at 30 days, 63% at 1 year, 51% at 2 years and 35% at 5 years of follow-up.


Prevalence and incidence rates of heart failure are high. In individuals aged 55, almost 1 in 3 will develop heart failure during their remaining lifespan. Heart failure continues to be a fatal disease, with only 35% surviving 5 years after the first diagnosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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