Top 10 Causes of Death In the US: Unveiling the Silent Killers

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

✅Quick Summary

In the United States, there are a number of silent killers lurking in our society. These silent killers are responsible for an alarming number of deaths each year, yet they often go unnoticed. From chronic diseases to accidents, the top 10 causes of death in the US shed light on the magnitude of the issue.

  • Understanding these causes is not only important for individuals to assess their own risks, but also for policymakers and healthcare professionals to develop effective prevention and management strategies.
  • This article delves into the depths of the top 10 causes of death in the US, exploring the numbers, the trends, and the underlying factors.
  • By uncovering the truth behind these silent killers, we hope to raise awareness and drive positive change in the fight against them.

So, join us as we unveil the curtain on these quiet devastations and shed light on the urgent need for action.

10 Heart illness

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

Lifestyle adjustments and regular checks avoid many of the top 10 killers.
2017 deaths: 647,457Trusted Source
Total deaths: 23.5%
Men and women die most from heart diseaseTrusted Source. This applies globally and in the U.S. Men account for over half of heart disease deaths.

Medical doctors define heart disease as several disorders. Plaque in artery walls causes several of these disorders.

As plaque forms, arteries narrow. This restricts blood flow and raises the risk of heart attack and stroke. It can cause angina, arrhythmias, and cardiac failure.

A healthy diet and regular exercise can minimize the risk of heart disease.

Recognizing heart attack signs can help people obtain medical attention and save their lives.

09 Cancer: 599,108 deaths in 2017.Trusted Source

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

Total deaths: 21.3%
Cancer happens when cells don’t die normally. The spread of these cells can disrupt life-sustaining processes and cause death if the body cannot control them.

Everyone is at risk, but most malignancies rise with age. Some people are more or less likely to get cancer due to smoking or chemical pollution. Genetics also has a significant impact on cancer.

Depending on the type, race, and sex, cancer risk Lung cancer kills more men and women than any other cancer.

However, researchers are continually improving cancer treatment. In fact, all cancer deaths in the U.S. have plummeted by 26% since 1991.

Cancer Fatalities Estimated for 2019
The American Cancer Society predicts 2019 cancer deathsTrusted Source.

They predict the major cancer deaths for men will be:

Lung/bronchus cancer: 76,650 fatalities
Prostate cancer: 31,620 deaths
Colorectal cancer: 27,640 deaths
The leading causes of cancer death for women are:

Lung/bronchus cancer: 66,020 deaths
Breast cancer: 41,760 deaths
Colon cancer: 23,380 deaths

08 Unintentional injuries

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

2017 deaths: 169,936Trusted trusted sources
6% of deaths
Accidents are the 4th leading cause of death in the U.S. and the main cause for 1–44-year-olds.

Possible preventative measures
Accidents are typically unavoidable. There are various techniques to reduce accidental injury and death.

Safety measures such as wearing a seatbelt and not driving or operating heavy machinery while intoxicated can prevent accidents.

07 Lower respiratory illness: chronic

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

2017 deaths: 160,201 Trusted Source
Total deaths: 5.7%
Chronic lower respiratory disease is a collection of lung disorders that obstruct airflow and produce breathing problems. The diseases are:

long-term lung disease
Chronic bronchitis, emphysema, and asthma
Smoking greatly raises the risk of these illnesses.

06 Cerebrovascular disorders and stroke

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

In 2017, stroke was the fifth-greatest cause of death in the U.S. Based on 146,383 verified fatalities, the percentage of total deaths is: 5.2%
Cerebrovascular illnesses result from brain blood vessel issues.

Four common cerebrovascular disorders are:

Types of stroke: Mini stroke subarachnoid hemorrhage; vascular dementia
Over 795,000 Americans get strokes annually. Stroke risk varies by race, ethnicity, and age.

The Southeast has the highest stroke mortality rate.

05 Alzheimer’s

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

2017 deaths: 121,404 Trusted Source
Total deaths: 4.3%
A category of disorder that induces cognitive decline is dementia. This hinders daily tasks.

Damage to brain nerve cells produces dementia. Damaged neurons cannot function and may die. This can impair memory, behavior, and cognition.

One type of dementia is Alzheimer’s. Another type, vascular dementia, has similar symptoms but affects brain blood flow.

Alzheimer’s patients lose the capacity to walk and swallow due to neuron degeneration and death.

In the last stages, patients may need 24-hour care and be bedridden. Alzheimer’s kills.

The Alzheimer’s Association estimates that 5.8 million Americans have the condition. This number may reach 14 million by 2050 as life expectancy rises.

Alzheimer’s is the only top-10 killer that doctors cannot cure, prevent, or halt.

04 2017 Diabetes Deaths: 83,564 Trusted Source

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

3% of deaths
The body cannot control blood glucose in diabetes, resulting in dangerously high levels. This is hyperglycemia.

Hyperglycemia damages nerves, blood vessels, and eyes.

The body transforms most meals into glucose, a simple sugar, for energy. The pancreas, near the stomach, produces insulin to transport glucose from the bloodstream into cells.

Type 1 and type 2 diabetes are the main categories.

Type 1 diabetics need insulin supplements because their bodies don’t manufacture any. Type 2 diabetics can’t use insulin well.

Diet and exercise can reduce type 2 diabetes risk.

Diabetes can cause heart disease, blindness, renal failure, and lower extremity amputations.

03 Flu and pneumonia

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

2017 deaths: 55,672Trusted Source: 2% of total deaths.
An extremely contagious viral infection, influenza is. It is one of the worst winter ailments.

Flu spreads readily when a carrier coughs or sneezes.

As the virus has several strains, a person can get the flu multiple times. They may be A, B, or C influenza.

Adults suffer more from type A viruses. Trusted Source, type B viruses mostly harm youngsters. Type C viruses are rare.

Flu patients might develop pneumonia, a dangerous lung illness.

Pneumonia fills lung air sacs with pus and other fluids, blocking oxygen from reaching the bloodstream. If blood oxygen levels are low, cells cannot operate. This can kill.

02 Kidney disease 2017 deaths: 50,633Trusted Source

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

1.8% of deaths
Kidney disease is common in people over 60.
Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis affect the kidneys.

Chronic renal disease damages the kidneys. Healthy kidneys filter blood better than damaged ones. Thus, blood waste lingers in the body and may cause additional health issues.

About 30 million Americans may have CKD. Over 60 and family history raise CKD riskTrusted Source. High blood pressure and diabetes usually cause CKD.

The most advanced stage of CKD causes symptoms. Thus, regular screenings lower renal disease mortality.

01 2017 Suicide Deaths: 47,173 Trusted Source

Top 10 Causes of Death In the US - Most Up-To-Date Information

Suicide victims may have had mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, or bipolar illness for years.

Not all suicide attempters or victims have these conditions.

Suicide is the second-leading cause of death for 10-34-year-olds.

Strengthening social networks, using proper medications, and seeking therapy may minimize suicide risk.


It’s important to keep in mind that these rankings can vary from year to year, and public health events can influence the statistics. For the most current and accurate information, refer to official sources such as the CDC or other relevant health organizations.

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Zainab Hashmi

I'm Zainab Hashmi, and I'm the Head Editor of I'm uncovering the world's wonders and presenting you with the most interesting top ten lists in many categories. I've been as a guest on various national radio and television networks.

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