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Commentary
November 3, 2010

Age Disparities in Heart Failure Research

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Department of Internal Medicine, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina (Dr Kitzman); and Department of Internal Medicine, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, Missouri (Dr Rich).

JAMA. 2010;304(17):1950-1951. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1592

In the United States, heart failure (HF) affects more than 5 million individuals, accounts for nearly $40 billion in annual health care expenditures,1 is associated with severely increased morbidity, mortality, and reduced health-related quality of life, and is the only major cardiac disorder that is increasing. Importantly, HF is overwhelmingly a disorder of the older population. Heart failure prevalence increases inexorably from middle to old age, with no abatement even into the tenth decade of life. It is the most common reason for hospitalization among Medicare recipients, and its lethality and complications increase progressively with age.2

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