Cardiovascular disease is a general term that refers to more than 70 different types of conditions affecting the heart and blood vessels. The most common forms include high blood pressure (hypertension), heart disease, and stroke.
An estimated 70 million Americans have one or more of these cardiovascular diseases. Some people are born with one of these conditions, whereas others acquire it later in life. Possible symptoms, causes, and treatment options will vary, as you might guess, because this disease category is so broad.
(Click Cardiovascular Disease for a more detailed look at this topic, with information on how heart disease and cardiovascular disease differ, possible risk factors for these conditions, and how the cardiovascular system works.)