Report: Coronary heart disease the leading cause of death in Australia

Richard Laycock 17 November 2017 NEWS

funeral burial grave cemetery death headstoneDementia and Alzheimer's disease a top three cause in all but one state.

Coronary heart disease, dementia and Alzheimer's disease and cerebrovascular disease are the three leading causes of death for Australians, according to the latest Mortality Over Regions and Time report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW).

The report, which looked at all causes of death in Australia between 2011 and 2015, found that coronary heart disease was the most common cause in all Australian states and territories.

The top three causes of death accounted for 42.83% of all deaths in the top 20 and for 28.01% of all deaths over that time span.

Coronary heart disease was responsible for 101,373 deaths, which was 20.55% of all deaths in the top 20 and 13.44% of all deaths.

Below are the top 20 causes of death for each state.

Top 20 causes of death by state

Cause NSW VIC QLD WA SA TAS ACT NT Total
Coronary heart disease 34,169 24,182 20,301 9,025 9,184 2,837 1,016 659 101,373
Dementia and Alzheimer's disease 18,416 14,179 9,616 4,907 6,108 1,741 601 186 55,754
Cerebrovascular disease 20,099 12,766 10,372 4,039 4,655 1,489 611 155 54,186
Lung cancer 13,930 9,756 8,307 3,939 3,252 1,268 404 328 41,184
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease 10,859 8,101 6,331 2,560 2,757 1,184 353 317 32,462
Diabetes 6,813 5,623 4,019 1,950 2,018 750 279 346 21,798
Colorectal cancer 6,702 5,554 4,160 1,715 1,795 634 300 119 20,979
Cancer, unknown, ill-defined 6,912 4,501 3,609 1,549 1,592 591 219 115 19,088
Heart failure and complications and ill-defined heart disease 6,717 4,856 2,166 1,228 1,445 565 172 83 17,232
Prostate cancer 5,190 3,875 3,394 1,327 1,320 170 69 15,345
Breast cancer 4,850 3,647 2,712 1,335 1,218 396 212 90 14,460
Influenza and pneumonia 4,185 4,046 2,244 1,223 1,347 384 138 13,567
Suicide 3,681 2,879 3,288 1,773 1,091 373 178 231 13,494
Pancreatic cancer 4,429 3,292 2,247 1,139 1,106 436 170 66 12,885
Kidney failure 3,838 3,468 1,636 1,051 1,007 292 107 11,399
Accidental falls 4,041 1,660 1,198 933 257 110 8,199
Hypertensive disease 4,174 2,341 893 380 133 7,921
Cardiac arrhythmias 3,519 2,581 778 292 144 7,314
Liver cancer 2,873 2,025 1,682 109 99 6,788
Other ill-defined causes 3,602 970 762 356 120 5,810
Leukaemia 2,110 1,630 756 4496
Septicaemia 3,438 3,438
Melanoma 1,784 793 2,577
Non-rheumatic valve disorders 1,678 252 107 2,037
Land transport accidents 931 222 1153
Lymphomas 748 748
Diseases of the musculoskeletal system and connective tissue 247 247
Liver disease 155 155
Certain conditions originating in the perinatal period, congenital malformations, deformations and chromosomal abnormalities 100 100
Malignant neoplasms of lip, oral cavity and pharynx 82 82
Assault 77 77

Dementia and Alzheimer's disease was a top three cause in every state or territory except for the Northern Territory.

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