Stroke Statistics


Stroke Knowledge

How much do you know about stroke? It turns out that only about 1 out of 3 adults in America would recognize the signs or symptoms of a stroke. Learn about the signs of a stroke so you can take the right steps for yourself or someone else who might be having a stroke.

Stroke Incidence

The U.S. population is approximately 320 million people.  

About 1 million strokes occur per year in U.S., which means that about 1 out of every 320 people will have a stroke.

The number of strokes has been gradually increasing in the United States.

Stroke Mortality (Death From Stroke)

About 130,000 people in the United States die from stroke per year. That means that about 1 out of 8 people who have a stroke will die from either the stroke itself or from complications arising from the stroke. There is 1 death from stroke every 4 minutes in the U.S. Stroke recently dropped from the 3rd leading cause of death to 4th leading cause of death.

Repeat Stroke

1 in 4 stroke survivors go on to experience another stroke. Death and serious disability from stroke are more likely with repeat strokes and with multiple strokes.  


Stroke costs 34 billion dollars annually in the U.S. The major contributors to this cost include health care, medication, job loss and disability.


The average age at onset of a first stroke is 71. About 2/3 of stroke sufferers are over 65 years of age and 1/3 are under 65 years of age.


African Americans have double the stroke rates of Caucasians in the U.S.


Women constitute 57% of stroke patients and men constitute 43%.

Stroke Around the World

Every year about 15 million people suffer from stroke worldwide. Death from stroke, defined as stroke mortality, is much higher in countries with a developing economy than in countries with a developed economy.

Stroke incidence is lowest in the western countries, including the United States, Canada, Australia and Western Europe.

Regional Differences Within the U.S.

Stroke incidence and death from stroke are more common in southeastern states than in the rest of the country.

Jobs Associated with Stroke

There are no specific jobs specifically identified as posing a high stroke risk but high stress is associated with stroke, as is poor educational level.

Socioeconomic Status and Stroke

Stroke incidence and stroke mortality are higher among lower income individuals due to lack of risk factor identification, lack of prevention and lack of medical treatment.

Lifestyle Habits

Smoking, high cholesterol, sedentary lifestyle, obesity and high stress have all been proven to contribute to stroke independently of one another, but the risk builds when an individual has more of these factors.

Effectiveness of Prevention

Quitting smoking is the most effective preventative measure against stroke. Moderate exercise has been proven to prevent stroke. A healthy diet moderate in fats, moderate in salt and moderate in calories protects against stroke. Stress management has been scientifically shown to be helpful in stroke prevention.

Major Causes

Hypertension, heart disease, high cholesterol, diabetes and blood clotting disorders are the leading health conditions that cause stroke. 50% of adults in the U.S. have at least of these stroke risk factors.

Weird and Rare Causes of Stroke

Head positions that require extension of the neck (beauty salon stroke), massage, nutritional toxicity and bug bites are uncommon, but well recognized causes of stroke.


Pollution can contribute to stroke risk, but it doesn’t cause stroke on its own.


It has been established that some people have an increased genetic tendency to have strokes.

Because stroke is not uncommon, almost everyone will either experience a stroke personally or will know someone who had a stroke. It is important to recognize the signs of stroke, to know when to call for help, and to be able to reach out and help someone who is living with stroke.


Factors influencing the decline in stroke mortality: a statement from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, Lackland DT, Roccella EJ, Deutsch AF, Fornage M, George MG, Howard G, Kissela BM, Kittner SJ, Lichtman JH, Lisabeth LD, Schwamm LH, Smith EE, Towfighi A; American Heart Association Stroke Council; Council on Cardiovascular and Stroke Nursing; Council on Quality of Care and Outcomes Research; Council on Functional Genomics and Translational Biology, Stroke, January 2014

Stroke Facts, Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Global Burden of Stroke

World Heart Federation

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