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Updated Statistics Show Heart Valve Disease Affects Up to 11 Million Americans, Costs at Least $23.4 Billion Annually

Published February 1, 2018

Updated Statistics Show Heart Valve Disease Affects Up to 11 Million Americans, Costs at Least $23.4 Billion Annually

"The Silver Book: Valve Disease" cover.

Washington, D.C., February 1, 2018 – Today the Alliance for Aging Research (Alliance) released The Silver Book®: Valve Disease volume and factsheet that share the latest data on the staggering human and economic burden of valve disease in America. These additions to The Silver Book®: Chronic Disease and Medical Innovation in an Aging Nation series confirm that innovation is the key to lessening the burden of heart valve disease on America’s older adults.

Heart valve disease is a leading type of cardiovascular disease that becomes more common with age. Published studies estimate that approximately five million people in the U.S. have heart valve disease. However, as noted in the new factsheet, based on current population estimates that number may be as high as 8.7 to 11.6 million. Heart valve disease is a serious disease that, left undetected and untreated, can lead to major complications, including death. And, heart valve disease is costly to the U.S. health care system, totaling $23.4 billion a year in direct health care expenditures.

“Valve disease affects one in ten Americans ages 75 and older, and kills more than 25,000 people a year. Fortunately, valve disease can usually be successfully treated with valve repair and replacement in patients of all ages, which can help save lives and ultimately drive down health care costs,” says Alliance Vice President of Health Programs Lindsay Clarke. “The Silver Book®: Valve Disease resources are valuable new tools that give policymakers, thought leaders, academics, and health advocates easy access to the most up-to-date statistics and infographics on the human and economic burden of heart valve disease, as well as the value of continued investments in research that are leading to improvements in treatment and care.”

These new resources are available online at The factsheet infographics are also available for use on social media.

The release of the resources coincides with American Heart Month and kicks off the National Heart Valve Disease Awareness Day Campaign. The awareness day is held on February 22 and encourages older adults to listen to their hearts, know the symptoms and risk factors for heart valve disease, and see a health care professional if they suspect something is wrong. To learn more, visit

The Silver Book®: Valve Disease was supported by unrestricted educational support from Edwards Lifesciences Foundation.

About the Alliance for Aging Research
The Alliance for Aging Research is the leading nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the pace of scientific discoveries and their application to vastly improve the universal human experience of aging and health. The Alliance believes advances in research help people live longer, happier, more productive lives and reduce healthcare costs over the long term. For more than 30 years, the Alliance has guided efforts to substantially increase funding and focus for aging at the National Institutes of Health and Food and Drug Administration; built influential coalitions to guide groundbreaking regulatory improvements for age-related diseases; and created award-winning, high-impact educational materials to improve the health and well-being of older adults and their family caregivers. For more information, visit

Media Contact:
Janelle Germanos
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