BACKGROUND: Myocardial infarction (MI) incidence and mortality display a high geographic variation. AIMS: The objective of the present study was to analyze MI mortality, cumulative incidence rate variability in seven regions of Spain from 1997 to 1998. METHODS AND RESULTS: Standardized methods were used to identify, find, register, and classify MI cases that were classified as definite, possible, insufficient-data MI, and non-MI. The total population of the seven monitored regions was 7,364,682 inhabitants. Of the 11,256 cases fulfilling eligibility criteria to investigate, 10,660 were selected to calculate MI rates: 6554 (61.5%) non-fatal definite MI, 1179 (11.1%) fatal definite MI, 1859 (17.4%) fatal possible MI, 1068 (10.0%) fatal cases with insufficient data. The IBERICA 25-74 years age-standardized cumulative incidence rates for men and women, were 207 (range: 175-252) and 45 (range: 36-65) per 100,000, respectively. The age-standardized mortality rates for men and women, were 73 (range: 62-94) and 20 (range: 13-29) per 100,000, respectively. Age-standardized case-fatality was 31.4 and 24.2% in men aged 25-74 and 35-64 years, respectively, and 32.7 and 27.0%, respectively, in women. CONCLUSIONS: MI cumulative incidence and mortality rates are low compared with other industrialized countries but, vary considerably among regions in a Mediterranean country like Spain.
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