× New WHO Report: Deaths from Non-Communicable diseases on the rise, with developing world hit hardest.

Explore about Non-Communicable Diseases

Non-Communicable Diseases:

A non-communicable disease (NCD) also known as chronic disease is a medical condition or disease that is non-infectious or non-transmissible. NCDs can refer to chronic diseases which last for long periods of time and progress slowly. NCDs are the leading cause of death globally. The WHO has characterized NCDs into four broad categories in decreasing number of deaths caused by them globally . NCDs are distinguished only by their non-infectious cause, not necessarily by their duration. Some chronic diseases of long duration, such as HIV/AIDS, are caused by infections. Chronic diseases require chronic care management as do all diseases that are slow to develop and of long duration.

They are:
1)Cardiovascular Diseases
2)Cancers
3)Chronic Respiratory Diseases
4)Diabetes


NCDs account for almost two-thirds of all deaths globally, with 80 per cent of these occurring in low- and middle-income countries.In 2012 they caused 68% of all deaths (38 million) up from 60% in 2000.About half were under age 70 and half were women.

Nature of NCDs:

People are increasingly exposed to a multiplicity of environmental and social influences, which frequently leads them to adopt unhealthy lifestyle / behaviors that result in a higher risk of NCDs and poor health.Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are usually caused by genetic or lifestyle factors.

Lifestyle Diseases:

NCDs include many environmental diseases covering a broad category of avoidable and unavoidable human health conditions caused by external factors, such as sunlight, nutrition, pollution, and lifestyle choices. The diseases of affluence are non-infectious diseases with environmental causes. Examples include:

• Many types of cardiovascular disease (CVD)
• Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) caused by smoking tobacco
• Diabetes Mellitus Type 2
• Lower back pain caused by too little exercise
• Malnutrition caused by too little food, or eating the wrong kinds of food (e.g. scurvy from lack of Vitamin C)
• Skin cancer caused by radiation from the sun
• Obesity

Genetic Diseases:

Genetic disorders are caused by errors in genetic information that produce diseases in the affected people. The origin of these genetic errors can be:

• Spontaneous errors or mutations to the genome:
• A change in chromosome numbers, such as Down syndrome.
• A defect in a gene caused by mutation, such as Cystic fibrosis.
• An increase in the amount of genetic information, such as Chimerism or Heterochromia.