The number of people in the US and Canada experiencing stroke and other serious heart problems rose for the first time since 2011 in 2016, according to a new analysis by researchers at Johns Hopkins University.
The analysis of data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, also known as NHANES, found the number of strokes and other heart problems increased by a median of 2.3 percent from 2015 to 2016.
That’s the first rise in strokes and heart problems since 2011, the researchers reported.
“Our data show that the rate of strokes is rising at an unprecedented pace,” said study co-author Dr. Andrew P. Pessah, an associate professor of medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.
“This is a very, very significant increase,” Pessh said.
“It is going to be a long time before we see a return to normal.”
The number of heart attacks in the United States rose in 2016 to a record 2,058, and nearly 4,000 people died from cardiovascular disease in 2016.
The number from other countries, however, decreased.
The data shows that the number and frequency of heart events is on the rise in the U.S. and Canada, the study authors said.
For instance, in the first half of this year, the number from the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates jumped by 4 percent and 7 percent, respectively.
The UK and the UAE had more than 500,000 heart attacks and 4,700 strokes in 2016 and 2017, respectively, the analysis showed.
In the United states, the overall increase in stroke and heart-related deaths was almost as large as the rise seen in the number, or increase in deaths, from other parts of the world, the authors said in the report.
However, while the United Nation’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) warned in April that new drugs and vaccines could increase the risk of strokes, the IARC report did not specify the risks of new strokes or heart attacks.
The report is part of a larger study by Johns Hopkins researchers that is published online in the journal PLOS ONE.
The study found that the prevalence of cardiovascular disease and stroke increased in countries with higher rates of smoking and drinking, and that smoking rates among children were lower than they are in other countries.