, Volume 19, Issue 4, pp 403-488
Date: 24 Oct 2012

European Guidelines on Cardiovascular Disease Prevention in Clinical Practice (Version 2012)

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What is Cardiovascular Disease Prevention?


Atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a chronic disorder developing insidiously throughout life and usually progressing to an advanced stage by the time symptoms occur. It remains the major cause of premature death in Europe, even though CVD mortality has fallen considerably over recent decades in many European countries. It is estimated that >80 % of all CVD mortality now occurs in developing countries.

CVD causes mass disability: within the coming decades the disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) estimate is expected to rise from a loss of 85 million DALYs in 1990 to a loss of ∼150 million DALYs globally in 2020, thereby remaining the leading somatic cause of loss of productivity [1].

CVD is strongly connected to lifestyle, especially the use of tobacco, unhealthy diet habits, physical inactivity, and psychosocial stress [2]. The World Health Organization (WHO) has stated that over three-quarters of all CVD mortality may ...

Other ESC entities having participated in the development of this document: Associations: European Association of Echocardiography (EAE), European Association of Percutaneous Cardiovascular Interventions (EAPCI), European Heart Rhythm Association (EHRA), Heart Failure Association (HFA) Working Groups: Acute Cardiac Care, e-Cardiology, Cardiovascular Pharmacology and Drug Therapy, Hypertension and the Heart Councils: Basic Cardiovascular Science, Cardiology Practice, Cardiovascular Imaging, Cardiovascular Nursing and Allied Professions, Cardiovascular Primary Care
The content of these European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Guidelines has been published for personal and educational use only. No commercial use is authorized. No part of the ESC Guidelines may be translated or reproduced in any form without written permission from the ESC. Permission can be obtained upon submission of a written request to Oxford University Press, the publisher of the European Heart Journal and the party authorized to handle such permissions on behalf of the ESC. Carlos Brotons (Spain), Gunilla Burell (Sweden), Antonio Ceriello (Spain), Johan De Sutter (Belgium), Jaap Deckers (The Netherlands), Stefano Del Prato (Italy), Hans-Christoph Diener (Germany), Donna Fitzsimons (UK), Zlatko Fras (Slovenia), Rainer Hambrecht (Germany), Piotr Jankowski (Poland), Ulrich Keil (Germany), Mike Kirby (UK), Mogens Lytken Larsen (Denmark), Giuseppe Mancia (Italy), Athanasios J. Manolis (Greece), John McMurray (UK), Andrzej Paja˛k (Poland), Alexander Parkhomenko (Ukraine), Loukianos Rallidis (Greece), Fausto Rigo (Italy), Evangelista Rocha (Portugal), Luis Miguel Ruilope (Spain), Enno van der Velde (The Netherlands), Diego Vanuzzo (Italy), Margus Viigimaa (Estonia), Massimo Volpe (Italy), Olov Wiklund (Sweden), Christian Wolpert (Germany).