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Causes of Death: Overview

56,441,319 Estimated Total Deaths in 2015 according to the
World Health Organization's Causes of Death 2015 Summary Tables

Causes of Death with Number of Deaths Caused

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Cause of Death Category
(if applicable)
Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Cardiovascular Diseases Noncommunicable Diseases 17,689,163 31.3 %
Malignant Neoplasms Noncommunicable Diseases 8,763,318 15.5 %
Other Neoplasms Noncommunicable Diseases 207,953 0.4 %
Infectious and Parasitic Diseases Communicable Conditions 5,706,288 10.1 %
Respiratory Diseases Noncommunicable Diseases 3,913,335 06.9 %
Respiratory Infections Communicable Conditions 3,198,846 05.7 %
Digestive Diseases Noncommunicable Diseases 2,346,869 04.2 %
Neonatal Conditions 2,311,272 04.1 %
Neurological Conditions Noncommunicable Diseases 2,010,841 03.6 %
Diabetes Mellitus Noncommunicable Diseases 1,585,530 02.8 %
Genitourinary Diseases Noncommunicable Diseases 1,382,254 02.4 %
Congenital Anomalies Noncommunicable Diseases 647,452 01.1 %
Nutritional Deficiencies 438,743 0.8 %
Endocrine, Blood, Immune Disorders Noncommunicable Diseases 412,588 0.7 %
Mental and Substance Use Disorders Noncommunicable Diseases 317,251 0.6 %
Maternal Conditions 303,449 0.5 %
Musculoskeletal Diseases Noncommunicable Diseases 155,498 0.3 %
Skin Diseases Noncommunicable Diseases 92,175 0.2 %
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Noncommunicable Diseases 19,458 0.03 %
Oral Conditions Noncommunicable Diseases 471 0.0001 %
Sense Organ Diseases Noncommunicable Diseases 0 0 %
Unintentional Injuries Injuries 3,526,586 06.2 %
Intentional Injuries Injuries 1,411,979 02.5 %

Cardiovascular Disease Deaths (31.3 % of total): Breakdown

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Cardiovascular Diseases Subcategory
(if applicable)
Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Ischaemic Heart Disease (Coronary Artery Disease) 8,756,006 15.51 %
Haemorrhagic Stroke (Bleeds) Stroke 3,329,336 05.90 %
Ischaemic Stroke (Clots) Stroke 2,911,275 05.16 %
Hypertensive Heart Disease 942,138 01.67 %
Cardiomyopathy, Myocarditis, Endocarditis 413,324 0.73 %
Rheumatic Heart Disease 305,272 0.54 %
Other Circulatory Diseases 1,031,811 01.83 %

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Malignant Neoplasm Deaths (15.5 % of total): Breakdown

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Malignant Neoplasms Subcategory
(if applicable)
Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Trachea, Bronchus, Lung Cancers 1,694,623 03 %
Colon and Rectal Cancers 774,065 01.37 %
Stomach Cancer 753,637 01.34 %
Breast Cancer 570,896 01.01 %
Oesophagus Cancer 415,329 0.74 %
Pancreas Cancer 357,915 0.63 %
Prostate Cancer 343,898 0.61 %
Liver Cancer Secondary to Hepatitis B Liver Cancer 337,454 0.60 %
Liver Cancer Secondary to Hepatitis C Liver Cancer 137,399 0.24 %
Liver Cancer Secondary to Alchohol Use Liver Cancer 238,445 0.42 %
Other Liver Cancer Liver Cancer 74,920 0.13 %
Leukaemia 289,977 0.51 %
Cervix Uteri Cancer 279,311 0.49 %
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Lymphomas, Multiple Myeloma 223,494 0.40 %
Hodgkin Lymphoma Lymphomas, Multiple Myeloma 26,747 0.05 %
Multiple Myeloma Lymphomas, Multiple Myeloma 93,272 0.17 %
Brain and Nervous System Cancers 210,185 0.37 %
Bladder Cancer 185,429 0.33 %
Gallbladder and Biliary Tract Cancer 170,030 0.30 %
Ovary Cancer 162,129 0.29 %
Lip and Oral Cavity Cancer Mouth and Oropharynx Cancers 159,961 0.28 %
Nasopharynx Cancer Mouth and Oropharynx Cancers 54,806 0.10 %
Other Pharynx Cancer Mouth and Oropharynx Cancers 104,465 0.19 %
Kidney Cancer 154,374 0.27 %
Larynx Cancer 90,382 0.16 %
Corpus Uteri Cancer 83,014 0.15 %
Malignant Skin Melanoma Melanoma and Other Skin Cancers 61,567 0.11 %
Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer Melanoma and Other Skin Cancers 50,312 0.09 %
Thyroid Cancer 44,610 0.08 %
Mesothelioma 24,124 0.04 %
Testicular Cancer 11,682 0.02 %
Other Malignant Neoplasms 584,866 01.04 %

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Infectious and Parasitic Disease Deaths (10.1 % of total): Breakdown

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Infectious and Parasitic Diseases Subcategory
(if applicable)
Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Diarrhoeal Diseases 1,388,629 02.46 %
Tuberculosis 1,373,159 02.43 %
HIV / AIDS 1,059,626 01.88 %
Malaria Parasitic and Vector Diseases 439,026 0.78 %
Dengue Parasitic and Vector Diseases 34,514 0.06 %
Rabies Parasitic and Vector Diseases 26,193 0.05 %
Schistosomiasis Parasitic and Vector Diseases 24,067 0.043 %
Cysticercosis Parasitic and Vector Diseases 24,064 0.043 %
Leishmaniasis Parasitic and Vector Diseases 21,127 0.037 %
Echinococcosis Parasitic and Vector Diseases 16,691 0.030 %
Yellow Fever Parasitic and Vector Diseases 11,815 0.021 %
Chagas Disease Parasitic and Vector Diseases 7,553 0.013 %
African Trypanosomiasis Parasitic and Vector Diseases 5,411 0.010 %
Lymphatic Filariasis Parasitic and Vector Diseases 0 0 %
Onchocerciasis Parasitic and Vector Diseases 0 0 %
Trachoma Parasitic and Vector Diseases 0 0 %
Meningitis 315,149 0.56 %
Measles Childhood-Cluster Diseases 139,844 0.25 %
Whooping Cough Childhood-Cluster Diseases 66,422 0.12 %
Tetanus Childhood-Cluster Diseases 63,997 0.11 %
Diphtheria Childhood-Cluster Diseases 2,778 0.0049 %
Encephalitis 89,372 0.158 %
Acute Hepatitis A Hepatitis 10,996 0.019 %
Acute Hepatitis B Hepatitis 87,076 0.154 %
Acute Hepatitis C Hepatitis 3,197 0.006 %
Acute Hepatitis E Hepatitis 43,805 0.08 %
Syphilis STDs excluding HIV 92,272 0.163 %
Gonorrhoea STDs excluding HIV 761 0.0013 %
Chlamydia STDs excluding HIV 174 0.0003 %
Trichomoniasis STDs excluding HIV 0 0 %
Genital Herpes STDs excluding HIV 0 0 %
Other STDs STDs excluding HIV 362 0.0006 %
Leprosy 15,933 0.028 %
Food-Bourne Trematodes Intestinal Nematode Infections 6,455 0.011 %
Ascariasis Intestinal Nematode Infections 2,940 0.0052 %
Trichuriasis Intestinal Nematode Infections 0 0 %
Hookworm Disease Intestinal Nematode Infections 0 0 %
Other Infectious Diseases 332,880 0.59 %

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Respiratory Disease Deaths (6.9 % of total): Breakdown

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Respiratory Diseases Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease 3,170,429 05.62 %
Asthma 383,176 0.68 %
Other Respiratory Diseases 359,730 0.64 %

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Respiratory Infection Deaths (5.7 % of total): Breakdown

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Respiratory Infections Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Lower Respiratory Infections 3,190,350 05.65 %
Upper Respiratory Infections 4,522 0.008 %
Otitis Media (Middle Ear Infection) 3,974 0.007 %

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Digestive Disease Deaths (4.2 % of total): Breakdown

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Digestive Diseases Subcategory
(if applicable)
Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Liver Cirrhosis due to Hepatitis B Cirrhosis of the Liver 462,690 0.82 %
Liver Cirrhosis due to Hepatitis C Cirrhosis of the Liver 258,814 0.46 %
Liver Cirrhosis due to Alchohol Use Cirrhosis of the Liver 291,705 0.52 %
Other Liver Cirrhosis Cirrhosis of the Liver 148,704 0.26 %
Peptic Ulcer Disease 235,103 0.42 %
Paralytic Ileus and Intestinal Obstruction 232,414 0.41 %
Gallbladder and Biliary Diseases 108,527 0.19 %
Pancreatitis 104,019 0.18 %
Appendicitis 45,145 0.08 %
Gastritis and Duodenitis 47,269 0.08 %
Inflammatory Bowel Disease 35,551 0.06 %
Other Digestive Diseases 376,927 0.67 %

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Neonatal Condition Deaths (4.1 % of total): Breakdown

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Neonatal Conditions Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Preterm Birth Complications 1,058,277 01.88 %
Birth Asphyxia and Birth Trauma 691189 01.22 %
Neonatal Sepsis and Infections 405,124 0.72 %
Other Neonatal Conditions 156,681 0.28 %

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Neurological Condition Deaths (3.6 % of total): Breakdown

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Neurological Conditions Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Alzheimer Disease and Other Dementias 1,541,880 02.73 %
Epilepsy 152,802 0.27 %
Parkinson Disease 128,399 0.23 %
Multiple Sclerosis 22,984 0.04 %
Migraine 0 0 %
Non-Migraine Headache 0 0 %
Other Neurological Conditions 164,775 0.29 %

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Genitourinary Disease Deaths (2.4 % of total): Breakdown

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Genitourinary Diseases Subcategory
(if applicable)
Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Chronic Kidney Disease due to Diabetes Kidney Diseases 333,693 0.59 %
Acute Glomerulonephritis Kidney Diseases 11,684 0.021 %
Other Chronic Kidney Diseases Kidney Diseases 783,868 01.39 %
Urolithiasis (Urinary Tract Stones) 14,620 0.026 %
Other Urinary Diseases 230,411 0.41 %
Gynecological Diseases 7,976 0.014 %
Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (Enlarged Prostate) 0 0 %
Infertility 0 0 %

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Congenital Anomaly Deaths (1.1 % of total): Breakdown

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Congenital Anomalies Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Congenital Heart Anomalies 302,480 0.54 %
Neural Tube Defects 66,005 0.12 %
Down Syndrome 26,111 0.05 %
Other Chromosomal Anomalies 24,150 0.04 %
Cleft Lip and Cleft Palate 1,378 0.002 %
Other Congenital Anomalies 227,328 0.40 %

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Nutritional Deficiency Deaths (0.8 % of total): Breakdown

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Nutritional Deficiencies Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Protein-Energy Malnutrition 330,388 0.59 %
Iron-Deficiency Anaemia 77,931 0.14 %
Iodine Deficiency 2,094 0.004 %
Vitamin A Deficiency 0 0 %
Other Nutritional Dificiencies 28,330 0.05 %

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Endocrine, Blood, Immune Disorder Deaths (0.7 % of total): Breakdown

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Endocrine, Blood, Immune Disorders Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Sickle Cell Disorders and Trait 117,417 0.21 %
Thalassaemias 19,432 0.03 %
Other Haemoglobinopathies and Haemolytic Anaemias 94,497 0.17 %
Other Endocrine, Blood, Immune Disorders 181,243 0.32 %

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Mental and Substance Use Disorder Deaths (0.6 % of total): Breakdown

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Mental and Substance Use Disorders Subcategory
(if applicable)
Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Alchohol Use Disorders Drug Use Disorders 128,910 0.228 %
Opiod Use Disorders Drug Use Disorders 127,373 0.226 %
Amphetamine Use Disorders Drug Use Disorders 11,385 0.020 %
Cocaine Use Disorders Drug Use Disorders 10,882 0.019 %
Cannabis Use Disorders Drug Use Disorders 0 0 %
Other Drug Use Disorders Drug Use Disorders 18,110 0.032 %
Schizophrenia 18,646 0.033 %
Eating Disorders 1,945 0.003 %
Major Depressive Disorder Depressive Disorders 0 0 %
Dysthymia Depressive Disorders 0 0 %
Bipolar Disorder 0 0 %
Anxiety Disorders 0 0 %
Autism and Asperger Syndrome 0 0 %
Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Syndrome Childhood Behavioural Disorders 0 0 %
Conduct Disorder Childhood Behavioural Disorders 0 0 %
Idiopathic Intellectual Disability 0 0 %
Other Mental and Behavioural Disorders 0 0 %

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Musculoskeletal Disease Deaths (0.3 % of total): Breakdown

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Musculoskeletal Diseases Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Rheumatoid Arthritis 48,237 0.09 %
Osteoarthritis 0 0 %
Gout 0 0 %
Back and Neck Pain 0 0 %
Other Musculoskeletal Disorders 107,261 0.19 %

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Unintentional Injury Deaths (6.2 % of total): Breakdown

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Unintentional Injuries Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Road Injury 1,342,265 02.38 %
Falls 646,271 01.15 %
Drowning 359,717 0.64 %
Exposure to Mechanical Forces 201,581 0.36 %
Fire, Heat and Hot Substances 180,051 0.32 %
Poisonings 107,705 0.19 %
Natural Disasters 14,088 0.025 %
Other Unintentional Injuries 674,907 01.20 %

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Intentional Injury Deaths (2.5 % of total): Breakdown

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Intentional Injuries Number of Deaths Percent of Total Deaths
Self-Harm 788,089 01.40 %
Interpersonal Violence 467,619 0.83 %
Collective Violence and Legal Intervention 156,271 0.28 %

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Information compiled from: Causes of Death 2015 Summary Tables | World Heath Organization
This page will be revised and updated peroidically. (last updated February 2017)
If you notice something wrong or missing, please let me know (robert@uoah.org).

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